How much time does it take to place an online order for your lunch or dinner? 1 minute or maybe a few seconds more! Statistics show that in a single hour 90 cyber hacks and data breaches are happening across the globe. It means that by the time we order our lunch, a security breach occurs!
The IT security patterns have evolved a lot since remote work conditions became effective. Furthermore, while we gear up for the back-to-office, the cyber threat patterns are also changing drastically. Generally, enterprises understand and emphasize the common and most-discussed IT security threats. However, some threat areas prevail within the IT infrastructure that we tend to overlook quite often.
Here are some top threats that we need to keep in mind to ensure information security.
If organizations lack stringent data security policies, then the growing mobilization of data leaves them vulnerable to breaches. Undereducated or lackadaisical employees could unknowingly leak the most confidential business data to the malefactors.
Risks aggravate if adequate configuration management is not done to ensure that end-users store data in the right place. If it is a cloud environment, the risk is even more as organized hacking groups are more expert at exploiting access control vulnerabilities. Not only corporate data is at risk, business-critical applications and corporate social media accounts, every data is flowing uncontrollably. In this backdrop, if corporate and business-critical data is not segregated properly, especially in WFH conditions, then a single breach could be catastrophic.
This hi-tech spying started way back in the late twentieth century. Even a couple of years ago, a 12-year cyber-espionage was discovered where hackers were eavesdropping on different government agencies and firms of other nations to sabotage their regular IT operations for an indefinite period.
To delve deeper into the concern, even today, enterprises are quite oblivious to the spying of confidential business secrets. Large corporations and government organizations are prime victims of cyber espionage, majorly done by rivals. The information stolen through spear phishing or malvertising are sold to some higher bidder or to the dark web. If cyber espionage is not taken seriously on time, it can put business processes and progress at stake.
Poor Data Encryption
Data breaches are costly if organizations fail to deploy standard encryption tools. Most of the organizations have mastered data encryption in transit but are unable to secure it at rest. This leaves data vulnerable and lowers the restrictions for cybercriminals to pack a punch. It is seen that organizations store encryption keys on the same system where data is stored. It is indirectly keeping the keys just beside the lock. Open access to data by end-users of different roles means IT security is ‘always unlocked’!
Updates of Security Patches
Cyber attackers obtain illegal access to the enterprise IT infrastructure because of IT loopholes. Unpatched software is the easiest and most frequented entry door to critical systems. Organizations with information security solutions always identify the patches that are not updated and act immediately. Not updating security patches is an open invitation for the cyber criminals to use the loopholes and abuse data.
Without a complete inventory of IT assets, it is never possible for any organization to keep a track of unmanaged and unprotected systems/ networks. If an organization is not aware of a system which is left unsecured, then security breaches are inevitable. The essence of asset management tools is for tracking and assessing software and hardware components to protect the IT environment from possible IT security threats.
Security is actually a peoples’ problem, not a technology problem. The majority of breach incidents are enforced by an undereducated employee who makes security mistakes while performing their routine tasks. These hack incidents could have surely been avoided if they were trained properly. Many times, employees share their credentials with their colleagues or managers when they are out of the office, so that any urgent assignment is not kept on hold.
In every circumstance, organizations need to have defined security policies to ensure accountability from the employees as they are the first line of defense. They should be equipped with relevant security awareness so that they can identify any suspicious activity and take preventive steps before the breach occurs.