The news of recent cyberattacks highlights how fast cybersecurity measures must move to keep up. When hackers took down Colonial Pipeline, the largest pipeline system for refined oil products in the U.S., the devastation was quick – and far reaching. The ransomware attacked computer equipment that managed their pipeline, causing gas shortages through the southeast and eastern regions of the country.
The Colonial Pipeline situation is not rare. Cyberattacks have hit many other companies and continue to increase. JBS USA, a leading global food company, is another recent example, and you don’t have to look far to find many more. Big-name companies like McDonald’s and Peloton have suffered large-scale data breaches as well.
Hacking is a Business – a Profitable One
If you underestimate the sophistication of these cyber criminals, you do so at your peril. Hacking is big business. There are criminal “gangs,” constantly working to find ways into your computer network to access your information. Ransomware groups are investing in smaller hacking teams, so they can continue research and development.
Unfortunately, hacking is here to stay.
The Changing Nature of Cyberattacks
The nature of the latest cyberattacks has changed as well. In addition to email phishing scams, cyber criminals steal data and hold it for ransom. In the past, companies might decline to pay the ransom and revert to backed up data. Now, cyber criminals have adjusted their tactics to mine data for information you wouldn’t want released and hold that for ransom.
And there’s a lot of information to find. Most companies have either proprietary data or personal information related to their employees or customers, such as social security numbers, driver’s license numbers or other identification. They also might have sensitive emails that discuss private matters they wouldn’t want exposed to the press.
The recent cyberattack on Kaseya, an IT management software supplier, was an example of how hackers can affect both large and small companies, all across the world. In this case, they used a tactic that’s becoming increasingly common – infiltrate software and spread the malware as it updates automatically.
Small Business and Cybersecurity
When small businesses fall victim to cyberattacks, it might not make the news; but they often pay the highest price by simply going out of business.
Most businesses have enough on their plates without adding continuous monitoring for cyberattacks. That’s why a partner like QualityIP is so valuable. You can leave the work of protecting your information to the professionals, and spend your time on managing your business.
The Colonial Pipeline attack, for instance, is believed to have originated with a weak password combined with working from home, where an unsecured VPN open port was compromised.
Find a Cybersecurity Partner
The cybersecurity news today highlights the benefits of having a partner who understands the risks and necessary safeguard measures.
At QualityIP, we have layered security into our software to mitigate cybersecurity events. And we have the right contacts. For example, during the Kaseya cyberattack, QualityIP knew about the incident hours before the story broke.
“QualityIP is part of an ISAO (Information Sharing Analytics Organization), which keeps us informed of rapidly developing cybersecurity issues,” says Greg Girton, Chief Information Officer at QualityIP. “We were already making remediations to prevent the risk to our customer base.”
If you want a team, working behind the scenes, who cares about protecting your business, contact QualityIP. We have our ear to the ground to the latest cybersecurity news, offer cybersecurity training to help you spot suspicious activity, and move quickly when you need us. Contact a security specialist for more information.