Cybercriminals successfully launched ransomware, phishing, anattacks on businesses in 2019. And it will be more difficult to stop them as they constantly improve their methods to steal more confidential business data.
According to Gartner’s forecast, worldwide spending on cybersecurity is expected to reach $170.4 billion in 2022. This is due to security leaders striving to bolster their organizations' security with technology that drives growth and keeps data secure. The market research further revealed that businesses are spending more on security because of increased risks, industry changes, and privacy concerns.
Let’s take a look at the top cyberthreats your business needs to watch out for in 2020:
#1. Social engineering attacks
Social engineering attacks are launched to deceive users into divulging confidential or personal information to be used for fraudulent purposes. It is one of the most dangerous cyberthreats today, with more than 1 in 10 employees falling for social engineering attacks, according to a study.
One of the most common forms of social engineering attacks is phishing. This is where an attacker generates a fraudulent email, text message, or voice call to trick a victim into divulging sensitive information such as login credentials for work, credit card information, and company secrets.
Data security experts find that even though many organizations have attempted to educate employees on how to spot phishing emails, many aren’t ready to do the same for voice phishing or "vishing," a form of phishing done using phone systems. Because they're highly convincing and difficult to detect, vishing attack incidents are expected to rise further in 2020.
To mitigate social engineering attacks, enforce IT policies that restrict users' system privileges to only what they need to do their tasks. You should also conduct phishing simulations that will test how your employees will react to fraudulent emails, text messages, or phone calls, aimed to increase phishing awareness.
#2. IoT-based attacks
More and more businesses and homes are using smart devices like smart speakers, watches, appliances, and alarm clocks. These devices are often overlooked when applying security patches, making them greatly vulnerable to IoT-based malware attacks that can compromise your data security.
Prevent IoT-based attacks by having a thorough inventory of all internet-connected devices on your network. These don’t just include desktops, laptops, servers, and smartphones, but also small items that connect to your network. Keep the firmware for these gadgets updated to prevent cybercriminals from exploiting software vulnerabilities.
While ransomware attacks targeting individuals have declined, the story isn’t the same with businesses. According to Malwarebytes’ 2019 State of Malware Report, hackers are launching more targeted attacks, compared to previous years where hackers distributed ransomware using mass-delivered emails. Also, the rate of detections within businesses rose from 2.8 million in the first quarter of 2018 to 9.5 million in the first quarter of 2019.
This is because cybercriminals know businesses have more money and motivation to pay the ransom once their computers are infected. Most of the time, businesses need to regain access to their files immediately, so they are more likely to pay the ransom.
To stop ransomware, invest in effective security solutions such as a firewall, which prevents malware from entering your system. Keep your anti-malware and antivirus programs updated as well so they can detect and delete malware instantly. Make sure to create external backups of your files on an external hard drive or a cloud drive so you can easily recover your backed-up files in case they get encrypted by ransomware.
#4. Insider attacks
Employees may accidentally have their accounts compromised or download malware that can harm your business. And there are those who may try to abuse their access privileges for personal gain or to sabotage your company.
Insider threats pose a significant risk to organizations. One careless mistake can expose your confidential data to hackers, and cost you your data, your reputation, and profits.
To minimize insider attacks, make sure that your employees can access only the platforms and files needed to do their job. This way, if an employee’s account gets compromised, the damage can easily be contained.
In 2020, make network security your priority with USWired. Our managed IT services will ensure you’re protected from any cyberthreat 24/7/365, helping you minimize the risks of losing your data and customers. Contact us today and say hello to the network protection your business truly deserves.