The world is undergoing major changes, many of them because of advances in technology. Automation and AI will continue to shape all aspects of how we live: some for the better, others for worse. Animals, with us counted among them, can take hundreds of years to evolve and learn new practices. So far mankind has been a mixed bag in how we’ve handled new technology. According to Moore’s law, technology doubles every 18 months, at least. The good: we may soon have prosthetic limbs controlled by thought. The bad: cyber attacks, of all kinds, are on the rise at a historic rate.
Identity theft, ransomware, email phishing and malicious emails all saw meteorite rises within the past five years. 20 years ago criminals bought guns and ski masks to rob a bank. Ironically, because of advances in physical security these types of crime are falling off a cliff. The risk is no longer worth the reward for them. It’s much safer to hack into networks of all kinds and steal valuable information. So if we know where they plan to attack, why is cyber security so difficult?
The Sophistication Of Hackers:
In the movies, hackers are typically represented as a solitary figure with glasses, in the basement, typing madly. In reality, hackers work more like a Fortune 500 company with a large group of dedicated operators sharing information, plying their considerable skills in an organized effort to take their mark.
The rash of ransomware attacks this past summer are examples of organized, sophisticated groups of hackers working within a corporate structure. To pull of an attack of on the scale of “Petya” or WannaCry”, hackers must do more than simply drop a virus and watch it spread. Distributing, promoting and ultimately collecting the virus and subsequent funds from such large attacks requires a team. In the case of WannaCry, users who had updated their operating systems routinely were safe. Despite that, over 200,000 machines were affected worldwide.
However, there are instances when even the most secure networks can be breached. The Sony hacking in 2013 eventually submarined the 2014 movie, “The Interview”. More recently, HBO was reportedly hacked, putting every “Game of Thrones” fan on edge for spoilers. The list of hacks inflicted upon highly guarded institutions is a long one. That being said, for every malware infected CD crossed with a systems router implanted by trojan, there’s a CFO losing $1.2 million by giving codes over the phone.
Good Help is Hard to Find:
In the cybersecurity industry, finding a highly competent, trustworthy resource who can translate the complexities of computer parlance into easy to understand English is exceedingly difficult. It isn’t enough to have a team watching over your valuable information and data. With the proliferation of smart devices, hackers have more opportunity to find weak points into a secure system. That’s why any quality cyber consultant has to be able to impress upon all employees, from board members down, good practices in safeguarding their digital lives.
A cyber risk assessment is a must for any company, whether they believe themselves to be vulnerable to hacking or not. Hackers are resourceful and make use of a wide variety of information that at first glance may not seem that valuable. Worthwhile tech security can make that determination and segment important data and minimize entry points. Without an understanding of what constitutes valuable information or how to close down entry points, any company is groping in the dark for answers.
As more companies learn from the recent rash of cyber attacks this summer, hackers will change their tactics and evolve. This is the core difficulty with cyber security, especially with larger companies who employ hundreds, if not thousands, of people. As you close one door, hackers are already working to open a window. Having a cybersecurity company who is understands that and is always working to stay a step ahead is worth their weight in gold. Check out Skysoft for a company just like that.