Cyber hacking, online attacks, and the need for cybersecurity is on the rise.
According to Norton Security, nearly 60 million Americans have been affected by identity theft. In 2023, it is estimated cybercriminals will be stealing 33 billion records per year.
These cyberattacks target everyone, but trends show small businesses are one of the most common targets. In fact, approximately 43% of cyberattacks target small businesses. (https://www.straightedgetech.com/7-top-cybersecurity-threats-and-their-solutions-for-2021 & how to prevent them/)
To help your business be prepared and secure for the coming year, Straight Edge Technology has identified 7 of the top cybersecurity threats for 2021 and what your team can do to prevent them.
7 Top Cybersecurity Threats In 2021 & Their Solutions
1. Phishing – Phishing occurs when a hacker uses a false identity to trick someone into providing sensitive information, downloading malware, or visiting a site containing malware. Common signs of phishing attacks are: generic language, such as “Sir” or “Madam”. Odd sense of urgency. Unusual requests for sensitive information. (Hint: The IRS and most businesses make it clear that they communicate through postal mail, NOT email.)
2. SMS-Based Phishing
3. PDF Scams
4. Malware & Ransomware – Malware (aka worms, viruses, Trojan horses, spyware) is any malicious software designed to harm a computer system. Malware is designed to steal, encrypt, delete data alter or hijack core computer functions, or track a computer user’s activity without their knowledge.
Malware is commonly distributed through physical hard drives, USB external drives, or internet downloads.
Ransomware spreads through phishing emails or unknowingly visiting an infected website. It involves a hacker locking the victim’s computer or files and holding the information for ransom, requiring payment before the hijacked files and system are unlocked.
Ransomware spreads through phishing emails or unknowingly visiting an infected website. There is no guarantee the hacker will give control of the computer or files back to the victim.
5. Database Exposure
6. Credential Stuffing
7. Accidental Sharing or Social Engineering Attacks
Social Engineering attacks are the biggest security risk today. They occur when a hacker tricks someone to give them information or access to software or data. Hackers try to manipulate people into breaking standard security procedures.
93% of business data breaches come from employees unknowingly engaging with a social engineering attack.
For example, a common rule is not allowing employees to share company usernames or passwords electronically. If an employee forgets a password, they should CALL a coworker instead of emailing them.
Any request from a business or direct message from social media should require that the receiver contact the company or person directly to see if the request is legitimate.