Legal Cybersecurity Report

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Legal Cybersecurity Report

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The legal industry has undergone significant changes due to the pandemic and the increasing threat of cybercriminals. With technological advancements and the growing importance of data, law firms face the challenge of protecting sensitive information while meeting client expectations. Data breaches pose severe risks, including reputational harm and financial losses.

What follows are some valuable insights to assist law firms in fortifying their data protection measures. By comprehending the potential risks and implementing recommended strategies, legal professionals can confidently navigate the digital era, ensuring the security of sensitive information and maintaining the trust of their clients.

To gain a more comprehensive understanding of the subject matter, we provide a glimpse into our latest eBook, the “2023 Law Firms Data Breach Trend Report.” This exclusive resource delves deeper into the topic, offering valuable information and analysis. To access the complete report, please download it here.

Current Threat Landscape in the Legal Industry

The legal industry faces an evolving and increasingly sophisticated threat landscape in cybersecurity. Law firms, legal professionals, and their clients are prime targets for cyber-attacks due to the sensitive and valuable information they handle. Here are some critical aspects of the current threat landscape in the legal industry:

  1. Targeted Cyber Attacks: Law firms are targeted explicitly by cybercriminals seeking to gain unauthorized access to confidential client data, intellectual property, or other sensitive information. These attacks range from phishing and social engineering tactics to more advanced techniques like ransomware attacks or supply chain compromises.
  2. Data Breaches: The legal sector is vulnerable to data breaches, which can lead to severe consequences. Breached data can include client information, financial records, case details, and other confidential materials. Such violations result in financial loss and damage the reputation and trust of the affected law firms.
  3. Ransomware Threats: Ransomware attacks have become prevalent across industries, and law firms are no exception. Cybercriminals encrypt critical data and demand ransom payments in exchange for its release. These attacks can cripple law firms’ operations, disrupt client services, and cause significant financial and reputational damage.
  4. Third-Party Risks: Law firms often collaborate with external vendors, contractors, and cloud service providers. However, these third-party relationships can introduce additional risks to the security of confidential data. Inadequate security measures by third parties can compromise law firms’ systems and make them vulnerable to cyber-attacks.
  5. Insider Threats: While external cyber threats are a significant concern, law firms must also be mindful of potential insider threats. Malicious insiders or unintentional negligence by employees can lead to data breaches or unauthorized access to sensitive information.
  6. Regulatory Compliance Challenges: The legal industry operates within strict regulatory requirements and data privacy laws. Compliance with these regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) or the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), adds more complexity to maintaining robust cybersecurity practices.

Trending Attacks for 2023

As we navigate the cybersecurity landscape in 2023, several major attack vectors are expected to dominate the threat landscape. Here are the key trending attacks anticipated for this year:

  • Email Hack and Phishing Scams: Email remains a prime target for cybercriminals. Hackers employ sophisticated techniques to breach email accounts, impersonate legitimate entities, and deceive users into sharing sensitive information. Statistics indicate that phishing attacks accounted for approximately 90% of data breaches in 2022, underlining the continued prevalence of this threat.
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  • Ransomware: Ransomware attacks remain a significant concern for organizations across industries. These attacks involve malicious software that encrypts critical data and demands a ransom for its release. Recent statistics show a staggering rise in ransomware incidents, with an estimated global cost of over $20 billion in 2022.
  • Mobile Attacks: With the increasing reliance on mobile devices, cybercriminals are targeting smartphones and tablets. Malicious apps, phishing texts, and mobile malware pose significant personal and corporate data risks. In 2022, mobile malware encounters surged by 40%, highlighting the escalating threat landscape.
  • Workplace or Desktop Attacks: Attacks targeting workplace environments and desktop systems are a vital concern. Cybercriminals exploit vulnerabilities in software, operating systems, or weak security practices to gain unauthorized access. In 2022, desktop attacks accounted for a substantial portion of reported security incidents.

Best Practices for Legal Cyber Security

Prioritizing cybersecurity is paramount to safeguarding sensitive client information and maintaining the integrity of legal practices. Implementing best practices for legal cybersecurity is crucial. Leveraging specialized Legal IT Services and Managed IT Services legal firms becomes imperative to address the unique challenges within the legal industry. These tailored services not only enhance data protection but also ensure compliance with stringent regulations governing the legal sector. By adopting proactive measures legal firms can fortify their defenses against cyber threats, fostering client trust and upholding the confidentiality of privileged information. Embracing Managed IT Services specifically designed for the legal sector is an essential step towards establishing a resilient cybersecurity framework in the legal domain.

  1. Data Encryption: Encrypting sensitive data at rest and in transit helps protect it from unauthorized access, even in a breach. Implement robust encryption protocols to safeguard client information, case details, and intellectual property.
  2. Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): Enforce MFA for all users, including employees and clients, to add an extra layer of security to account logins. This helps prevent unauthorized access, especially in the case of compromised passwords.
  3. Regular Software Updates and Patch Management: Keep all software, including operating systems and applications, updated with the latest security patches. Regularly patching vulnerabilities reduces the risk of exploitation by cyber attackers.
  4. Employee Training and Awareness: Conduct regular cybersecurity training for all staff members to educate them about potential threats, such as phishing scams or social engineering tactics. Promote a culture of cybersecurity awareness to empower employees to recognize and report suspicious activities.
  5. Secure Remote Access: Implement secure remote access protocols, such as Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) and secure remote desktop solutions, to ensure secure communication and data transfer for remote workers.
  6. Incident Response Plan: Develop a comprehensive incident response plan that outlines the steps to be taken during a cybersecurity incident. Test the plan periodically and train relevant staff to respond effectively to minimize the impact of any breach.
  7. Access Controls and Privilege Management: Limit access to sensitive data on a need-to-know basis. Regularly review and update user access privileges to prevent unauthorized access and reduce the risk of insider threats.
  8. Regular Data Backups: Maintain frequent backups of critical data and test the restoration process to ensure data availability in case of ransomware attacks or data loss incidents.
  9. Vendor and Third-Party Security Assessments: Regularly assess the cybersecurity practices of third-party vendors, contractors, and cloud service providers to ensure they meet necessary security standards and do not introduce additional risks.
  10. Compliance with Data Privacy Regulations: Stay current with relevant data privacy regulations and ensure compliance with GDPR, CCPA, or industry-specific data protection regulations.

By implementing these best practices, law firms can significantly enhance their cybersecurity posture and better protect themselves and their clients’ sensitive information from evolving cyber threats. A proactive and comprehensive approach to cybersecurity is essential to maintain trust, reputation, and operational integrity in the digital age.

 

Collaborating with IT and Cyber Security Experts

Collaborating provides access to specialized expertise and experience in identifying and mitigating cyber risks. With a firm like Protected Harbor, our experts stay updated with the latest trends and best practices, tailoring their knowledge to address law firms’ unique challenges.

Collaborations also allow for comprehensive cyber security assessments, customized solutions, proactive monitoring, and incident response capabilities. Training programs our experts provide enhance employee awareness and empower them to recognize and respond to potential threats.

Compliance support ensures adherence to data privacy regulations, while incident investigation and data recovery help minimize the impact of cyber incidents. By partnering with Protected Harbor, law firms can strengthen their overall security posture, safeguard client data, and focus on delivering exceptional legal services.

Safeguarding sensitive client information and protecting against cyber threats is paramount for law firms in the digital age. To stay informed about the latest trends and insights in law firm data breaches, download our 2023 Law Firm Data Breach Trend Report. Protect your firm and client data with the trusted expertise of Protected Harbor. Take the first step towards strengthening your cybersecurity today.

Types of Ransomware 2023

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Types of Ransomware 2023

Ransomware is a type of malicious software that can cause significant damage to individuals, businesses, and even entire industries. It works by encrypting the victim’s files or locking them out of their computer or network and demanding payment, usually in a cryptocurrency, in exchange for the decryption key.

In recent years, ransomware attacks have become increasingly common and sophisticated, leading to significant financial losses, data breaches, and reputational damage. It is essential to be aware of the different types of ransomware to better protect against them.

This blog post will discuss some of the most common types of ransomware in 2023, including traditional ransomware, crypto-jacking, mobile ransomware, IoT ransomware, and Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS). We will also explore the impact of each type of ransomware and what individuals and organizations can do to prevent and respond to these attacks.

Traditional Ransomware

Traditional ransomware is the original form of ransomware and the most commonly known type. It encrypts the victim’s files and demands a ransom for the decryption key. Typically, the ransom demand is made in Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies, which makes it challenging to trace and recover the funds.

The most common delivery method for traditional ransomware is phishing emails containing malicious attachments or links. Once the victim clicks on the link or opens the attachment, the ransomware is downloaded and installed on their computer, and it begins to encrypt the files. The victim is then presented with a message that demands payment, often with a deadline, and threatens to permanently delete the encrypted files if the ransom is not paid.

Examples of traditional ransomware include WannaCry, Locky, and Crypto Locker. These attacks have caused significant disruption and financial damage to individuals and organizations across the globe. The WannaCry ransomware, for instance, affected more than 200,000 computers in 150 countries in 2017, causing an estimated $4 billion in losses.

To protect against traditional ransomware attacks, it is crucial to practice good cybersecurity hygiene, such as keeping software up to date, using strong passwords, and being cautious when opening emails or clicking links. It is also essential to back up important data regularly and store backups in a secure location, separate from the main network. A reliable backup system can help reduce the impact of a ransomware attack by enabling the victim to restore their data without paying the ransom.

 

Cryptojacking

Cryptojacking is ransomware that has become increasingly prevalent in recent years. Unlike traditional ransomware encrypts the victim’s files, cryptojacking hijacks the victim’s computer processing power to mine cryptocurrency, such as Bitcoin or Monero.

This can cause the victim’s computer to slow down significantly or even crash. The victim is then presented with a message that demands payment, often with a deadline, in exchange for stopping the mining operation.

Examples of cryptojacking ransomware include Smominru, CoinMiner, and WannaMine. These attacks have caused significant financial losses to both individuals and organizations, as the cost of electricity required to mine cryptocurrency is often passed on to the victim.

Antivirus software and ad-blockers can help prevent cryptojacking from infecting your computer. Additionally, monitoring your computer’s performance and taking action if you notice any unusual activity, such as a sudden slowdown or increased fan noise, is important.

 

Mobile Ransomware

Mobile ransomware targets mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets and is one of the most popular types of ransomware 2023. This ransomware can lock the victim out of their device or encrypt their files and then demand a ransom for restoring access.

Mobile ransomware typically infects a victim’s device through a malicious app, often downloaded from third-party app stores or links in phishing emails. Once installed, the ransomware can lock the victim out of their device by displaying a fake lock screen, which demands payment to unlock the device. It can also encrypt the victim’s files and demand payment for the decryption key.

Examples of mobile ransomware include SLocker, Fusob, and DoubleLocker. These attacks have caused significant financial losses and data breaches, as mobile devices often contain sensitive personal and business information.

To protect against mobile ransomware attacks, it is important to only download apps from trusted sources, such as the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. Suppose your device becomes infected with mobile ransomware. In that case, it is important to contact a security expert and refrain from paying the ransom, as there is no guarantee that the attacker will restore access to the device.

 

Types-of-Ransomware-2023-MiddleIoT Ransomware

IoT (Internet of Things) ransomware targets internet-connected devices, such as smart home appliances, security systems, and other IoT devices. These devices are often connected to the internet without proper security, making them vulnerable to attack.

IoT ransomware typically infects a device through unsecured connections, such as default usernames and passwords or outdated firmware and software. Once infected, the ransomware can lock the victim out of their device or encrypt their files and demand a ransom in exchange for restoring access.

Examples of IoT ransomware include BrickerBot and Hajime. These attacks have caused significant disruption to IoT devices and networks, as IoT devices often lack security updates and are not monitored as closely as traditional computing devices.

To protect against IoT ransomware attacks, it is essential to change default usernames and passwords on IoT devices and ensure that all firmware and software are up to date. It is also important to monitor the network for unusual activity, such as changes to device configurations or a sudden increase in network traffic.

Implementing network segmentation, which separates IoT devices from other devices on the network, can also help prevent the spread of IoT ransomware. Backing up data regularly and storing backups in a secure location is also essential in case of an IoT ransomware attack.

 

Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS)

Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) is ransomware that operates as a subscription-based model. In this model, the creators of the ransomware provide access to the ransomware software and infrastructure to third-party attackers, who use it to carry out ransomware attacks on their targets.

RaaS makes it easier for less technically skilled criminals to launch ransomware attacks. They can purchase access to the ransomware software and support services without needing coding or infrastructure setup expertise. The RaaS provider takes a cut of the profits generated from the attacks, making it a lucrative business model for both the RaaS provider and the attackers.

Examples of RaaS include DarkSide, REvil, and Avaddon. These groups have carried out high-profile attacks on organizations and demanded large ransoms in exchange for returning the encrypted data.

Implementing a defense-in-depth strategy, including firewalls, antivirus software, and intrusion detection systems, are important. Backing up data regularly and storing backups in a secure location is also essential in case of a ransomware attack. In addition, organizations should educate their employees on how to detect and respond to phishing emails and other social engineering attacks.

 

Conclusion

Ransomware attacks continue to be a significant threat to individuals and organizations alike. As the types of ransomware continue to evolve, it is crucial to stay informed about the latest trends and strategies to protect against them.

To protect against ransomware 2023 attacks, it is vital to implement a comprehensive security strategy that includes regular software updates, strong passwords, and security awareness training for employees. Backing up data regularly and storing backups in a secure location is also essential in case of a ransomware attack.

As the threat landscape continues to evolve, it is essential to stay vigilant and adapt to new threats as they emerge. By staying informed and implementing best practices for ransomware prevention and response, individuals and organizations can reduce their risk of falling victim to a ransomware attack.

Working with a reputable cybersecurity provider like Protected Harbor can increase your organization’s resilience to ransomware attacks and help protect your business from potentially devastating financial and reputational damage.

A comprehensive ransomware protection solution from Protected Harbor includes measures such as:

  • Regular software updates and patches to prevent known vulnerabilities from being exploited
  • Strong password policies and multi-factor authentication to prevent unauthorized access to sensitive systems and data
  • Security awareness training for employees to help them identify and report suspicious activity
  • Network segmentation to prevent ransomware from spreading across the network
  • Data backup and recovery solutions to ensure that critical data can be recovered in case of a ransomware attack
  • Antivirus and anti-malware software to detect and prevent ransomware attacks before they can cause damage
  • Intrusion detection and response systems to detect and respond to suspicious activity on the network

As a trusted cybersecurity partner, we can help you evaluate your specific needs and implement the appropriate solutions to keep your business secure from types of malware 2023. Get your business a free cybersecurity assessment and a ransomware protection strategy today.

5 Essential Cybersecurity Tips for CEOs‍

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Securing Your Business: 5 Cybersecurity Tips for CEOs‍

As a CEO, you know that running a business is no small feat. From managing personnel to overseeing operations, there is a lot to consider. One of the most important considerations is ensuring the security of your business. In the digital age, cyber threats are rampant. As a result, CEOs must know how to protect their business from cyber-attacks. This blog post will cover the different types of cyber threats and provide 5 cybersecurity tips for CEOs.

 

What are the Cyber Risks?

Cyber-attacks come in many forms, from phishing and ransomware to denial of service. Unfortunately, any business connected to the internet is vulnerable to some cyber-attack. As a result, CEOs must be aware of the potential risks and take steps to protect their business.

Another risk is data loss. In the digital age, data is the lifeblood of any business. If data is lost or stolen, it can have a devastating effect on the company. Finally, there is the risk of financial loss. Cyber-attacks can lead to financial losses due to fraud and theft.

 

The Different Types of Cyber Attacks

Now that we’ve discussed some of the risks businesses face, let’s look at the different types of cyber-attacks. The most common type of cyber-attack is phishing. Phishing is a social engineering attack where an attacker sends an email to a victim to gain access to their credentials or sensitive information.

Another type of cyber-attack is malware. Malware is malicious software that can be used to gain access to a system or steal data. Some types of malware include ransomware, which can encrypt a system and demand payment to unlock it, and spyware, which is used to gain access to a system and steal data.

Finally, there are distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks. These attacks involve sending a large amount of traffic to a website to overwhelm the server and take it down.

 

5 Essential Cybersecurity Tips for CEOs

Now that we’ve discussed the different types of cyber-attacks, let’s look at five essential cybersecurity tips for CEOs. These tips can help protect your business from cyber-attacks and ensure that your data is secure.

 

1. Keep Software Up to Date

One essential cybersecurity tip for CEOs is keeping software up to date. Outdated software can be a significant security risk, as attackers can exploit known vulnerabilities. Ensure your software is updated by putting strict policies and steps in place. Avoid delaying, waiting, and hesitating. 

 

2. Educate Staff about Cybersecurity

Email is still the primary method of attack, followed by ransomware attacks, and Covid-19 has just worsened things. Attacks with spearfishing have risen during the lockdown. Every employee in your company must receive comprehensive training in cybersecurity fundamentals. They must distinguish between a legitimate email and a phishing email.

These fundamentals are crucial, and it’s surprising how many businesses get them incorrectly or ignore them entirely. It’s a never-ending battle that is constantly evolving and progressing.

 

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Another essential cybersecurity tip is to implement a risk management strategy. This involves Numerous attempts to steal critical data from technology organizations and expand technological advancement. CEOs must become proficient in risk management approaches to handle any problems that may arise due to cybersecurity. The worst scenario for a CEO is to think that their business is safe from cyber-attacks. There is a 100% possibility that if you have internet access, you are at risk of cyberattack.

 

4. Data Sharing and Management

Data leaks can occur accidentally as well as on purpose. Sharing a slide with private information not meant for the general public is far too simple.

Recognize the worth of your data. Who shares data? What and with whom do employees want to share? What are sharing tools used? What instruments are secure? In other words, data security governance is necessary.

The traditional IT security perimeter has been compromised by remote work. Your organization’s data and workers’ digital identities are your most valuable digital assets because endpoints are scattered across networks and geographical areas.

Make sure you set up the necessary tools to determine who, when, and what can be done with the data belonging to your organization.

 

5. Regularly Audit your Security Systems

Make sure your IT team understands the importance of ongoing system effectiveness testing and cybersecurity consulting. Request network reports evaluating the data gathered during routine use and identify and address any irregularities that might be signs of a threat.

As an added benefit, analyzing these reports can aid in better management decisions by understanding how the company operates inside. Find out if the team utilizes outside audits in addition to internal checks to audit systems.

To avoid leaving yourself open to new dangers, check to see if your hardware and software assets are still within the approved lifecycle. Your asset inventory should be reviewed frequently to track what needs to be retired.

 

Conclusion

Several cybersecurity services and solutions are available for businesses that don’t have the resources or expertise to manage their cybersecurity. These services can help companies implement the essential cybersecurity for small business tips outlined in this blog post and ensure their business is secure.

At Protected Harbor, we offer tailored IT services and cybersecurity strategies to protect your business from cyber-attacks. We can help you implement the essential cybersecurity tips outlined in this blog post and ensure that your business is secure. And with our free cybersecurity assessment, you can review your security systems in-depth and identify potential risks.

Have you created a recovery plan?   As a final question, have you thought about the employee’s security matrix? Train staff on how to use resources effectively to prevent unexpected security breaches.

Get in touch with us today for a free cybersecurity assessment and find out how we can help you protect your business.

7 Types of Cyber-attacks to Watch Out for in 2023

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7 Types of Cyber-attacks to Watch Out for in 2023

The world is ever-evolving, and so is the cyber threat landscape. As technology advances, so do the methods of cybercriminals. As we enter the new year, it’s crucial to plan for it, especially for your resilience in any cyber security attacks. The importance of cyber security has never been greater, and the frequency of assaults and breaches has recently increased. This blog post will look at the 7 types of cyber-attacks to watch out for in 2023.

 

Introduction to Cybersecurity

As we move closer to the future, the need for cybersecurity becomes ever more critical. Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting networks, systems, and programs from digital attacks. It is also the practice of ensuring data privacy and integrity. Cybersecurity is essential for businesses, organizations, governments, and individuals.

 

Types of Cyber-attacks

There are many different types of cyber-attacks. These include phishing attacks, malware attacks, man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks, denial of service (DoS) attacks, SQL injection attacks, password attacks, and insider threats.

 

1. Phishing Attacks

Phishing attacks are one of the most common types of cyber-attacks. In a phishing attack, the attacker sends an email that appears to be from a legitimate source, such as a company or a bank. The email contains a link that, when clicked, takes the user to a malicious website. The website then asks the user to enter personal information, such as username and password.

It is important to be aware of phishing attacks and to be wary of any suspicious emails. It is also essential to ensure that the website being visited is secure and is from a legitimate source.

2. Malware Attacks

Malware is short for malicious software. It is malicious code or software designed to damage or disrupt systems and networks. Malware can be viruses, worms, trojans, spyware, ransomware, and adware.

Malware can be spread through emails, downloads, and websites. One has to be aware of the signs of malware attacks, such as slow computer performance, pop-up ads, and sudden changes in settings. It is also vital to update your anti-virus software regularly and to use a reputable anti-virus program.

3. Man-in-the-Middle (MITM) Attacks

Man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks are a type of cyber-attack in which the attacker intercepts communication between two parties. The attacker can eavesdrop on the communication and, in some cases, even alter the communication.

MITM attacks can be carried out on various networks and systems, including wireless networks, VoIP networks, and email systems. It becomes necessary to use secure networks and encryption when sending sensitive data.

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4. Denial of Service (DoS) Attacks

A Denial-of-Service Attack poses a severe risk to businesses. Attackers target systems, servers, or networks, in this case, and bombard them with traffic to drain their bandwidth and resources. The attacker attempts to make a server or network resource unavailable. The attacker does this by flooding the server or network with requests, causing the system to become overwhelmed and unable to respond to legitimate requests.

DoS attacks can be prevented by using secure networks, limiting access to servers and networks, and using firewalls. It is also essential to be aware of the signs of DoS attacks and to respond quickly if any suspicious activity is detected.

5. SQL Injection Attacks

In an SQL injection attack, the attacker attempts to gain access to a database by injecting malicious code into a vulnerable input field. The malicious code is then executed, allowing the attacker to access the database.

SQL injection attacks can be prevented using secure coding practices, properly validating user input, and secure authentication methods. It is also important to regularly update the database and to use intrusion detection systems.

6. Password Attacks

Password attacks are a type of attack in which the attacker attempts to gain access to a system or network by guessing or cracking a user’s password. To decipher your password, the attacker can use a computer program or password-cracking tools like Aircrack, Cain, Abel, John the Ripper, Hashcat, etc.

It is crucial to use strong passwords and to change them regularly. It is also essential to enable two-factor authentication and to use a password manager to store passwords securely.

7. Insider Threat

An insider threat, as the name implies, involves an insider rather than a third party. In this situation, it can be someone who works for the company and is familiar with its operations. The potential damage from insider threats is enormous.

Small organizations are particularly vulnerable to insider threats because their employees frequently have access to sensitive data. There are several causes for this kind of attack, including avarice, malice, and even negligence. Insider threats are tricky because they are difficult to predict.

 

Cybersecurity Statistics and Trends

In 2020, the global cybersecurity market was valued at over $170 billion, expected to grow in the coming years. According to Cybersecurity Ventures, the global cybersecurity market will be worth over $300 billion by 2024.

In addition to the growth in the cybersecurity market, there has been an increase in cyber-attacks. In 2022, the number of cyber-attacks increased by over 40% compared to 2021.

 

Cybersecurity Solutions

To protect against cyber-attacks, it is crucial to have a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy in place. This strategy should include employee training, secure networks, regular security updates, and intrusion detection systems.

Partnering with a reliable cybersecurity provider, such as Protected Harbor, is also important. Protected Harbor provides a range of cybersecurity services, including security assessments, vulnerability management, and incident response.

 

Conclusion

You have learned everything there is to know about cyberattacks from this essay on their several types. You studied the definition of a cyber-attack, the top 7 types, and the techniques to avoid one. It is wise to be knowledgeable about cyberattacks and network security, given the rise in cybercrimes today. Watch this video about cybersecurity threats to learn more about this subject.

If you’re looking for a reliable cybersecurity partner, look no further than Protected Harbor. With their range of cybersecurity services, from penetration testing, cloud security, ransomware protection, and email filtering to threat detection and response, we’ve you covered. Whether you’re an SMB or a large enterprise, we have a solution that works for you.

Have you got any inquiries for us about “Cyber Attacks”? Please get in touch with our security specialist. You’ll hear from one of our experts as soon as they can!

The Top 10 Ransomware Attacks Of 2022

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The Top 10 Ransomware Attacks Of 2022

Ransomware attacks rose to an all-time high during the year 2022 as most businesses continued their operations through online mediums. Due to the usage of mainly online platforms, these left businesses open to cybercriminals who were sophisticated in their ransomware attacks. According to statistics, within the first quarter of 2022, there were approximately 236.1 million ransomware attacks around the globe.

Companies in turn have to spend a considerable amount in order to rectify the damages of these attacks. According to Cybersecurity ventures, the cost of ransomware attacks are going to increase to $265 billion by 2031.

All of these stats conclude that ransomware attacks will not be slowing down and will only continue to become more advanced. Below, we will be looking at the top 10 ransomware attacks of 2022 that affected both companies and governments systems.

What is a Ransomware Attack?

Ransomware is a type of malware that cybercriminals use to get access to information. When a system gets infected by ransomware, it blocks any user access and encrypts the systems data. Cybercriminals will then demand a ransom to release the locked data. Such a process is known as a ransomware attack.

Cybercriminals can target any individual or company through this type of attack. The affected person or company usually has two options to try and regain access to their data. The first option is that the victim will either pay the ransom to the cybercriminals, which does not guarantee that the hacker will release the encrypted files. The second option, is the victim needs to make an effort to remove the malware, sometimes through either a third-party IT service provider or their own in-house team, which again, is not always a guarantee in recovering every lost file.

The Top Ransomware Attacks in 2022

According to experts, 2022 was the biggest year for ransomware attacks. Let’s take a look at some of the most significant ones.

Top-10-Greatest-Ransomware-Attacks-Of-2022-13-jan-middle1. Bridgestone

In February 2022, Bridgestone, one of the largest tire manufacturers in the world, detected a security breach caused by the LockBit ransomware gang. Despite Bridgestone’s efforts to mitigate the attack, the company had to halt their production for a week due to a network outage in North and Latin America.

On March 15, the perpetrators announced they were going to leak the stolen data if they didn’t get paid their ransom fee. In addition to a security check and reconnection to their network, the company has not provided details about the ransom thus far.

2. Puma

On January 10 of 2022, one of the workers of the popular sportswear brand “Puma,” was informed of a data breach following a ransomware attack on Kronos, one of Puma’s workforce management solutions providers. In December of 2021, Kronos had experienced its first incident. According to reports, hackers stole the personal information of over 6,632 of its employees, including US Social Security Numbers, and encrypted the data.

Neither customer data nor financial information was affected. On January 22, Kronos regained full access to their data. To make up for this incident, Kronos offered Puma employees two years of free Experian IdentityWorks, which includes credit monitoring, identity theft insurance, and identity restoration.

3. Toyota

In February and March of 2022, Cybercriminals unleashed a ransomware attack on three Toyota suppliers. However, a specific attack on Toyota’s supplier, Kojima Industries, forced the company to halt their operations at 14 Japanese plants.

According to reports, the hack caused a 5% drop in the company’s monthly production capacity. Moreover, Denso and Bridgestone, two Toyota suppliers, were also targeted by ransomware within 11 days.

4. Nvidia

In February 2022, cybercriminals targeted the world’s largest semiconductor chip company Nvidia. According to the company, the threat actor leaked employee credentials as well as proprietary information online.

As part of the attack, Lapsus$ claimed they had access to 1TB of company data that would soon be available publicly. In addition to this, the cybercriminals made a ransom demand of $1 Million.

Some media reports stated that parts of Nvidia’s business had to be taken offline for two days due to compromised internal systems. According to the company, however, the attack did not affect its operations.

5. Costa Rica Government

2022 was the first time in history that a country declared a national emergency response to a cyber-attack. In early April, the first ransomware attack struck the nation, bringing the ministry of finance to its knees and affecting the public and private sectors.

Initially, Conti demanded $10 million in ransom from the government, which subsequently increased to $20 million. As a result of another attack on May 31st, the country’s healthcare system was in disarray which wound up taking Costa Rica’s healthcare systems offline. The Costa Rican social security fund was also affected by this attack which wound up being linked to HIVE.

6. Bernalillo County

On January 5, Bernalillo County, the largest county in New Mexico, became a victim of a ransomware attack, which brought down several government departments and institutions. The Metropolitan Detention Center was also affected as security cameras, and automatic doors fell offline. Government officials had to restrict the movement of inmates, which is a direct violation of laws for inmate confinement.

For this reason, the county had to file an emergency appeal in the federal court against the act due to this malware attack. However, this was an incredible eye-opener regarding how ransomware attacks can affect citizens’ welfare.

7. SpiceJet

In early 2022, Indian Airline SpiceJet fell victim to a ransomware attack. As a result, hundreds of passengers had to wait in different locations for more than 6 hours, greatly affecting the brand’s reputation.

Moreover, it also raised questions about cybersecurity gaps within the aviation industry. The SpiceJet ransomware attack also highlighted the importance of incident response planning, an initiative that could play a vital role in stopping such future cyber-crimes.

8. Shields Health Care Group

In March, Shields Health Care Group (Shields) suffered a security breach that exposed around two million patient details. Due to Shields’ reliance on hospitals and medical centers, these affects have been extensive leaving at least 53 facilities and their patients vulnerable.

Shield’s official website shows that the company became aware of the ransomware attack on March 28, 2022. They immediately hired cybersecurity experts to tackle the situation and examine the damage of the incident. It was then they found out that hackers gained access to the personal information of patients. However, the company claims they haven’t found any evidence of data misuse.

9. Hensoldt

On January 12, 2022, Hensoldt, a global defense contractor, acknowledged that several of its UK subsidiaries had been the target of a ransomware attack. The company provides sensor solutions for defense, aerospace, and security software to organizations like the US Army, US Marine Corps, and US National Guard.

Although the company has not disclosed the security breach details, the ransomware group, Lorenz, claimed credit and listed the ransom as paid. As of now, it is unclear whether Hensoldt paid the ransom or if another threat actor purchased the data.

10. Marriott

In 2014, hackers compromised Marriott guest records. According to an estimate, the personal data of around 340m guests became publicly available. Although this incident wasn’t public until September 2018, it led to a fine of £14.4m from the UK Information Commissioner’s office. In January 2020, a similar incident occurred when hackers accessed 5.2m of guest records.

In June 2022, hackers claimed to have stolen more than 20GB of sensitive data, including guests’ credit card information. Using social engineering, the attackers allegedly tricked an employee at a Marriott property in Maryland into granting them computer access. Despite Marriott’s denial, it plans to contact more than 300 to 400 people about the incident.

Wrap Up

Ransomware attacks have been a part of the computing world since long before most people knew they existed, and they are not going away any time soon. It’s a cheap, effective, and simple technique for hackers that can infiltrate even the most secure networks.

Businesses need to focus on keeping themselves safe by working on their security. In this regard, experts like Protected Harbor can help you. Our team of experts will tailor a solution to meet your company’s needs, keeping your data safe and secure.

With Protected Harbor, you can defend your data against ransomware threats. To increase the safety and security of your business operations, we combine the most recent immutability technology with top-notch storage solutions. Stay one step ahead of cybercriminals by partnering with a provider that offers email security, endpoint detection, network penetration testing, ransomware, and anti-malware mechanisms.

Unsure which solution is best for your company? Contact our team of experts today and let them determine which solution best fits your company’s needs.

How to Recognize Malware

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How to Recognize Malware?

Due to rapid advancement in technology and the use of digital devices, the risks of cyber attacks on individuals, organizations, government, and private sectors are increasing. A cyber attack attempts to access a computer system, a group of computers, or a network infrastructure to cause harm. Electrical blackouts, military equipment failures, and national security secrets leaks are possible outcomes of cyber strikes. They can lead to the theft of valuable and sensitive information, such as medical records. They can paralyze or interrupt phone and computer networks.

Cyber risks include computer viruses, data breaches, and DoS attacks. Malware is an example of an escalating cyber threat. Malware has been used to cause disruptions, make money, conduct cyber warfare methods and much more since the early 1970s.

  • Last year, 34% of firms had malware-related security issues.
  • Following March 2020, Google found roughly 600-800 malware-infected sites weekly, compared to around 3000 infected sites between January and March.

People have a habit of using loose security terms. However, it’s critical to understand your malware categories. Understanding how different types of malware spread is essential to containing and eradicating them. This article will help you know how to recognize malware.

 

What is Malware?

Malware or malicious software disrupts computer operations, gathers sensitive information, or accesses private computer systems. Malicious software, or malware, is designed to damage or disrupt computers and computer networks.

Malware comes in various forms and often varies in sophistication, but some things are common to most types of malware. They’re usually small programs that trick people into installing them on their computers. Once the computer has been infected with malware, it may be slowed down, destroyed, or made vulnerable to malicious attacks from other sources.

It includes computer viruses, keyloggers, and other malicious programs that damage or disrupt computers and networks. Malware attacks can range from simple annoyances such as pop-up messages to extremely damaging programs that cause financial loss or identity theft.

To protect your systems from malware, it’s important to invest in reliable malware protection solutions such as Malwarebytes. Malware protection for PC  can help protect your data from malicious attacks and keep your systems running smoothly. Investing in the right malware protection for Mac can give peace of mind to Mac users that their data is secure and protected.

 

 

How-to-Recognize-Malware-middleWays to Tell if You’re Infected with Malware

The best way to tell if your computer has been infected with malware is to look for specific symptoms. Here are some tips on how you can tell if your device has been affected by malicious software:

  • Slow performance: If you notice that your device is performing slower than usual, there might be a problem with malware. When malicious programs run on your PC, they can affect its performance and make everything take longer than usual. For example, opening files or programs might take longer, and web pages may not load properly.
  • Unexpected behavior changes: If anything that generally happens on your PC starts happening when it shouldn’t — or doesn’t happen when it should — then this could be a sign of malware infection. For example, if your browser opens new tabs without permission or downloads files without asking permission, these could be malware infection signs.

If you have malware on your computer, it can lead to various problems. Some malware displays pop-ups and advertisements, some steal personal information stored on your computer, and some even try to access your bank account. If you believe your system contains malware, you must use an effective anti-malware program to remove the threat.

If you experience these symptoms, you may have malware on your computer. You are in danger when the virus starts to harm your system. You need to know how to know if you have malware or if malware will keep affecting your system.

 

How Malware Gets on Your Device

Malware can get onto your device in many ways. Here are some of them.

 

1.    Malicious Websites

Hackers often create malicious websites that trick you into downloading software onto your device by appearing as legitimate sites. For example, they may create fake social media pages for popular websites like Facebook or LinkedIn, containing malware links embedded in the website code.

2.    Email Attachments

Malware is delivered by email in 94% of cases. Phishing assaults are becoming more common. To steal personally identifiable information, cyber hackers imitate trustworthy institutions. These attachments often appear as files you need to open to view their contents (such as an invoice or document). A typical example of this type of attachment is a PDF document containing an executable file hidden inside it. It automatically downloads and installs malware on your computer without knowing when you open it.

3.    Downloading Apps from Unknown Sources

If you’re downloading a file from the Internet, you must be careful where you get it from and what kind of content it contains. Ensure you only download files from reputable sources — such as official developer websites or other trusted sources — and avoid peer-to-peer file-sharing networks.

4.    Not Updating Your Apps Regularly

While updating your apps on Android isn’t easy — you need to ensure that every app is compatible with the latest version of Android before doing so. It’s still important to keep up with updates to protect against new malware threats. Suppose you’re unwilling or unable to update your apps regularly. In that case, the best thing you can do is scan your device for malware once in a while using anti-virus software.

 

Effects Of Malware

Malware protection has become important in today’s business landscape. The bad guys are getting more innovative and creative as they develop new ways of getting into your systems. Malware can cause many problems that affect your company’s daily operation and long-term security. They could steal passwords and credit card numbers or make your computer inoperable by deleting files. In addition to these apparent problems, malware can cause company data to be lost or corrupted.

The following are some common symptoms of a malware infection:

  • Unexpected pop-ups in your browser or other applications. These are usually advertisements but can also be attempted by malicious software to trick you into installing more malware.
  • The presence of suspicious files on your computer. These may include executable files (.exe), dynamic link libraries (.dll), or scripts (.vbs). If you find any of these on your computer, it’s good to delete them immediately.
  • There are frequent crashes, program freezes, blue screens (BSODs), or other system errors. In some cases, these issues might be caused by a hardware problem, but they could also result from malware that has taken over part or all of the operating system (OS).

Conclusion

In this digital era, corporate device and network malware attacks are rising. Cybercriminals are spreading advanced variants of robust malware to infect endpoints. Not only have these attacks increased, but the level of sophistication has also improved.

Protected Harbor offers extensive malware protection from viruses, ransomware, spyware, and other malicious software. It also includes a firewall to prevent outside threats from compromising your computer. One of the most helpful features of this program is its real-time cloud scanning which keeps your computer safe even if you download a malicious program. In addition, you can schedule scans to make sure that your computer is always protected. With Protected Harbor, you get access to helpful 24/7 support as well. An ideal solution for such scenarios with complete protection against malware attacks. What are you waiting for? Get protected from malware today with a free IT audit.

The Most Common SMB Cybersecurity Threats

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The Most Common SMB Cybersecurity Threats And How to Protect Your Business

Even though cyberattacks on small and medium-sized enterprises don’t always make news, they pose a real threat to many professionals’ lives, their jobs, and the clients they represent. Because small and medium-sized businesses may lack the backup and mitigation capabilities of some of the more prominent players, SMB cyberattacks frequently impact them.

A new report from the National Small Business Association (NSBA) finds that small businesses are the most likely to be targeted by cybercriminals. The study, which was conducted in partnership with Norton by Symantec, found that small businesses make up 99% of all companies and are responsible for nearly half of all jobs in the United States.

 

Common SMB Cybersecurity Threats and Their Prevention

The research revealed that the most common SMB cybersecurity threats include social engineering, physical access to networks and data, malware (DDOS), phishing, ransomware, etc. Let’s discuss this in detail!

 

DDOS

A distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack overwhelms your network’s capacity. The United States targeted about 35% of distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks in 2021. With slightly under 20% of attacks, the United Kingdom came in second and China third. The most common target is the computer and internet sector.

Using numerous compromised computer systems as sources of attack traffic, DDoS attacks are practical. Computers and other networked resources, like IoT devices, can be exploited by machines.

When viewed from a distance, a DDoS assault resembles unexpected traffic congestion that blocks the roadway and keeps ordinary traffic from reaching its destination.

How to Prevent DDOS

It is not enough to choose a good hosting provider; you also need to ensure that your website is configured correctly so that it will not be susceptible to a DDoS attack. You should use an effective Content Delivery Network (CDN) if possible because CDNs can help reduce the load on servers operated by your website and thus reduce the stress placed on them during an attack.

 

Phishing Attacks

Phishing attacks can also come through social engineering because they use spam messages that look authentic but contain links or attachments that look like something else. Financial institutions targeted 23.6% of all phishing attacks during the first quarter of 2022.

These attacks can be hazardous for small businesses because their employees may not know how to recognize fake emails from their bosses or co-workers.

How to Prevent Phishing Attacks?

The simplest way to protect yourself from phishing attacks is to educate your people on how to respond if they encounter one. Here are some tips:

  • Don’t click on links in emails that aren’t from someone you know.
  • Never enter personal information into forms in emails
  • Don’t open attachments unless they come from someone you know and trust.

Malware

Malware is malicious software that can infiltrate a network, damage files, steal sensitive information, and encrypt data. It can spread through email attachments or links in social media posts. The professional sector was the first worldwide industry affected by malware assaults between November 2020 and October 2021. There were 1,234 malware incidences in the industry throughout the measurement period. With 775 such events, the information sector was in second place.

How to Prevent Malware?

  • The good news is that there are several ways to protect yourself against malware attacks.
  • Use antivirus software
  • Keep your operating system up-to-date
  • Use antivirus software with real-time protection
  • Perform regular backups

 

Ransomware

In ransomware, data on a victim’s computer or mobile device is encrypted, and the victim is demanded to pay to have it decrypted. Ransomware affected 68.5% of businesses in 2021. This was the highest figure reported thus far and increased from the prior three years. Each year, more than half of all survey respondents said their employer had fallen victim to ransomware.

To release the data, cybercriminals demand ransom money from their victims. A vigilant eye and security software are advised to guard against ransomware infection. Following an illness, malware victims have three options: either they can pay the ransom, attempt to delete the software, or restart the device. Extortion Trojans use the Remote Desktop Protocol, phishing emails, and software flaws as attack vectors.

How to Prevent Ransomware?

A ransomware infection can’t be removed by turning off one computer and switching to another due to encryption. Getting your data back requires either recovering from a backup or paying the attackers. A malware infection can take anywhere from days (if it’s relatively simple) to weeks (if it’s more complicated).

 

Viruses

A security breach or loophole allows viruses to enter the equipment. Viruses come in various forms and are designed to damage your electronics. Computer viruses can impede computer performance, destroy or eliminate files, and impair programs. A virus can be acquired in several ways, including file sharing, corrupt emails, visiting malicious websites, and downloading destructive software. An increase in pop-up windows, unauthorized password changes to your account, destroyed files, and a slowdown in your network speed indicates that you have a virus on your computer.

How to Prevent Common Viruses?

There are many ways to protect from viruses attacks, but here are some of the most important ones:

  • Don’t open attachments from unknown sources.
  • Use antivirus software regularly. Antivirus software protects computers from viruses.

The Most Common SMB Cybersecurity Threats And How to Protect Your Business middleSQL injection

Relational databases can be accessed using the standard language known as SQL or Structured Query Language. Databases are used to store user information like usernames and passwords in apps and other forms of programming. Additionally, databases are frequently the most efficient and safe way to store various types of data, such as private bank account information and public blog postings and comments.

SQL queries frequently employ parameters to send data from users into a secure database or the other way around. Attackers can leverage the points where your app talks with a database using a SQL argument to access private data and other secured locations if the values in those user-supplied SQL arguments aren’t protected by sanitizing or prepared statements.

How to Prevent SQL Injection?

To prevent SQL injections, Use parameterized queries. Parameterized queries allow you to specify what parameters will be used in the question and what values will be permitted for each parameter. This prevents hackers from entering malicious data into your application.

 

Conclusion

Unfortunately, you can’t avoid cyber threats. But you can protect your business from them by investing in cybersecurity solutions.

Even though small businesses don’t have the same resources as larger enterprises, they can still protect themselves from cyber threats. You can start with basic security measures, such as installing antivirus software, updating your computer’s operating system, and using strong passwords. Additionally, you should consider investing in a cybersecurity solution.

Choosing the right cybersecurity service provider is just as important as the other steps your company takes to protect its data.

Unfortunately, many small businesses don’t have the resources to hire a full-time staff to manage their cybersecurity. That’s where a managed service provider like Protected Harbor comes in. Protected Harbor protects your data against cyber threats, including malware, ransomware, and data leaks. In addition, you have a team of experts at your side.

Our main focus is on risk reduction and breach prevention, so you can expect a lot of attention to detail regarding accounting monitoring and protection against malware, viruses, phishing scams, and other threats. The service also strongly focuses on data privacy, a highly sought-after feature among customers who work with sensitive data.

Get a free cybersecurity assessment, network penetration testing and secure your business today. Contact us today.

The Complete Guide to Ransomware Protection for SMBs: Ebook Release

The Complete Guide to Ransomware Protection for SMBs: Ebook Release

Ransomware is a new kid on the cyber-security block, and it’s bringing a whole new meaning to the phrase “cybercrime.” With ransomware’s growing threat, Small and Mid-sized Businesses (SMBs) don’t have time to learn how to protect their online presence from ransomware. Now they need protection that is easily accessible and affordable.

The good news? With some preparation, SMBs can protect themselves from these cybercriminals without breaking the bank or sacrificing security effectiveness. Today we are excited to give you an exclusive sneak peek at our new eBook – Your Complete Guide to Ransomware Protection for SMBs. Download it for free to read in detail.

 

What is Ransomware, and Why Should SMBs Care?

Ransomware is malicious software designed to block access to computer systems or data by blocking inaccessibility by the owner, operator, or other authorized personnel. A ransomware attack may happen when you least expect it, and it has become increasingly common among businesses of all sizes.

It can infiltrate your business computer systems through unsecured networks, emails, social media, and even your employees’ infected devices. Once inside a computer system, it can be almost impossible to remove, and most importantly, it can be extremely costly to get rid of.

Ransomware can pose a severe threat to SMBs. Nearly half of SMB cyber attacks are due to ransomware, making it the number one threat.

 

Don’t Be Scared; Be Prepared!

While it’s true that the best defense against a ransomware attack is not to get infected in the first place, that’s easier said than done.

The best way to prevent a ransomware attack is to:

  • regularly back up your data
  • keep your systems fully patched and updated with the latest security patches and software updates
  • use antivirus software with behavioral analysis and real-time scanning enabled
  • use an internet firewall that blocks malicious URLs
  • use strong and unique passwords for all accounts
  • avoid clicking on suspicious links
  • train your employees to avoid opening attachments from unknown senders
  • have a plan of action in place in case a malware attack hits you

Complete-Guide-to-Ransomware-Protection-for-SMBs-middle-imageHow can an SMB detect a potential ransomware attack?

If you’re unsure if you have been infected with ransomware, you can check your system for indicators of a ransomware attack. Look out for strange network activity, your internet connection dropping out, your systems slowing down, or your employees receiving pop-up messages on their computer screens. Should SMBs pay the ransom if they get hit with a ransomware attack? There is no easy answer to this question. Every situation is different, and it is best to consult your company’s IT department to determine the best action.

 

The Complete Guide to Ransomware Protection for SMBs: Sneak Peak

The dangers of ransomware are real. But they don’t have to spell disaster for your SMB. The key to protecting yourself is to have a proper backup strategy, keep your systems updated with the latest security patches and software updates, and use an internet firewall that blocks malicious URLs. Don’t let ransomware take control of your company. Be prepared for these malicious threats with the Complete Guide to Ransomware Protection for SMBs.

This eBook is the ultimate guide to defending against ransomware threats and protecting your SMB from potential ransomware attacks. We’ll show you how to keep your employees educated and informed on how to avoid ransomware attacks, how to avoid becoming an easy target, and what to do if they accidentally become infected.

We’ll also show you how to protect your computer systems and data with the best anti-ransomware solutions. We’ve compiled the best ransomware protection software, tips and tricks, and expert advice to help you withstand these malicious threats and keep your SMB safe from ransomware.

Download the free ebook today, and keep reading our other resources to stay safe. Contact us today to get a free cybersecurity audit.

 

How Social Media Angler Phishing Attacks Target Businesses

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How Social Media Angler Phishing Attacks Target Businesses

Cybercriminals develop new methods every day for committing online fraud. This also applies to Angler Phishing, a recent type of cybercrime. This threat targets its victims via social media. The criminal gathers private information by posting false messages on a bogus social network account.

Social media is an effective tool for phishing attacks. The key to social media phishing is using personal information, such as a username and password, to trick users into revealing sensitive information about themselves. Most attacks are carried out via fake email messages, but there has also been an increase in phishing websites and malicious links.

In this blog, we’ll explain how Angler Phishing operates, how to spot it, and how to safeguard yourself against the potential loss of your data and possibly even your money.

 

What is Angler Phishing?

Angler phishing is a form of email fraud that uses fake websites to trick you into clicking on a link. This scam aims to steal your login credentials and use them to gain access to your bank account or other personal information.

The act of pretending to be a customer care account on social media to contact an irate customer is known as angler phishing. In these attacks, victims were lured into providing access to their personal information or account credentials in almost 55% of cases last year that targeted clients of financial institutions.

These scams are often spread by emails that appear to be from banks, authorities, or other reliable companies. The emails contain links or embedded images that can direct you to fake websites that appear legitimate. Once there, you’ll be asked to enter your account information — including login credentials for your bank accounts and email addresses for various social media platforms.

The goal is to steal your login credentials and use them to gain access to your bank account or other personal information.

 

How do Angler Phishing Attacks work?

Angler phishing attacks are simple but effective because they exploit a vulnerability in business-related social media accounts. In most cases, the attacker will create a web page with an identical URL address as the legitimate page they are trying to access.

When a BEC attack targets a business through social media, companies must take precautions against these cyberattacks.

 

How-Social-Media-Angler-Phishing-Attacks-Target-Businesses-middle-imageImpact Of Angler Phishing Attacks on Business

If you run a company or have a presence on social media, you should be aware of the impact of an angler phishing attack on your brand’s reputation:

 

1.   Business Disruption

A business may suffer a substantial loss due to a cyberattack, mainly if malware infestation is involved. A complete reversal of operations may be necessary to address the hack. The virus may require the company to operate on a skeleton crew or suspend operation altogether until the malware has been removed.

An interruption of business services can cause significant economic disruptions if the economy is already fragile. A cyberattack could also increase crime rates, making the situation worse.

Business disruption can result from both natural disasters and manufactured events like cyberattacks. The latter category includes everything from information theft to destructive viruses that target specific industries or sectors of society.

 

2.   Revenue Loss

Loss of revenue can have a huge impact, especially for businesses that rely on the internet and e-commerce. The costs of fraud, cyber security breaches, and other types of attacks can be very high, so it is essential to prevent them from happening in the first place.

The first step is creating an active cyber security policy that clearly outlines what the organization expects from its employees, what it will do if a breach happens and how it will respond to such an event.

Secondly, training employees about the importance of validating incoming data before acting on it is essential. Employees should also be made aware that no information should be shared with anyone outside their team without prior authorization.

 

3.   Intellectual Property Loss

Even if businesses are not protected under a ransomware attack, they risk losing user data, trade secrets, research, and blueprints. Regulatory companies, tech companies, pharmaceutical and defense providers are often hit the hardest. A company losing a patented invention for millions of dollars would no longer be able to afford to undertake the kinds of research and development that precede it.

Attempting to struggle directly with financial setbacks is simpler than you might think, but it’s far more challenging to do well without handling sensitive company info appropriately.

Trade Secrets Theft also has severe implications for manufacturers and suppliers who rely on customer relationship management (CRM) systems to track sales trends and contact lists. Suppose a hacker could access these systems and steal trade secret information such as product formulas or pricing strategies. In that case, this could seriously impair their ability to compete against other companies that have not been victimized by cybercrime.

 

4.   Reputation Effect

While the damage to reputation is the most significant consequence of a data breach, it’s not the only one. The costs involved in mitigating a breach can be substantial.

Although many companies have experienced data breaches, few have suffered the consequences. However, even though there are many benefits to having your own data breach preparedness plans, you still need to consider some risks before implementing one.

 

Conclusion

While many types of attacks from botnets or DDoS attacks use malvertising to gain access to sensitive business data, Angler phishing can potentially allow for the same. As a result, businesses need to be aware that such attacks exist and how they work to prevent them from occurring in the first place.

Another tip is to be wary of links in emails. Most email links don’t go anywhere and are just there for decoration.

Many companies are likely unaware of such attacks against their networks, trying to mitigate them once they occur. The best way to avoid these attacks is to be skeptical of any links or offers you see on social media. Protected Harbor is your partner in safeguarding your business against cyber threats. With our risk-based approach to security and our experience with thousands of customers, we can create a solution that works for you. Our team of experts will assess your organization’s security posture and recommend how to improve it. We will also develop a detailed action plan to help you stay secure from phishing emails, ransomware, and threat detection and response.

We offer a free cybersecurity audit to all businesses, regardless of size or industry. Contact one of our cybersecurity experts today.

Top 10 Scariest Types of Malware

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Top 10 Scariest Types of Malware

It’s a dangerous world out there, and plenty of malicious actors lurking to infect your gadgets. You may be surprised that computer viruses can attach themselves to any of your devices, not just your computer. Malware can have devastating effects and jeopardize your personal information. Fortunately, you can defend yourself against various malware in the future, but that’s another story.

This Halloween, we bring you the top 10 scariest types of malware. Also, keep up with our other resources published weekly in Cybersecurity Awareness Month to keep you safe.

 

What is Malware?

Malware is malicious software that a threat actor uses to wreak havoc on a target company or individual. Malware is typically discovered online, including emails, false links, advertising, hidden text, and websites you (or your employees) may visit. Malware’s ultimate objective is to damage or exploit systems and networks, frequently to steal data or money.

One employee making a mistaken click is all it takes for the malware to install itself and start running its program.

Malware attacks are increasing, particularly in the wake of the epidemic. Attacks now total an astonishing 10.4 million every year, on average. Threat vectors and attack patterns are also evolving. Ransomware gangs and malware-as-a-service are more prevalent now than before the epidemic, and supply chain and ransomware attacks are also on the rise.

It’s crucial to remember that many malware attacks start as phishing or social engineering scams. Although there are technologies that people and organizations can and ought to use to stop malware attempts, user training is crucial because it protects them from social engineering.

 

List of Top 10 Scariest Types

10-Scariest-Types-of-Malware Middle

of Malware

  1. Ransomware- It is inarguably the most dangerous type of malware. As the name suggests, this malware is set up on a computer to prevent user access. A ransom is frequently demanded to restore control.
  2. Botnets- Botnets infect a network of computers and are typically disguised to allow third parties to operate them. Fraudsters frequently utilize them to engage in fraudulent behavior.
  3. DDOS- Also known as Distribute Denial of service. This is a deadly attack that launches from several computers, which are already infected, and floods web servers with requests until they break and users cannot access the service.
  4. APT (Advanced Persistent Threat)- This sophisticated malware will breach the system security to keep an eye on it and continuously steal data from a machine.
  5. Exploits- This malware will try to access and take control of particular activities without the user’s awareness by taking advantage of any system flaws.
  6. Backdoors- You feel helpless due to the intrusive infection controlling the system through the back door.
  7. Keyloggers- The goal of this spyware, as its name implies, is to read your keystrokes (everything you enter), exposing your important information.
  8. Phishing- This is a form of online crime. Consider it malware that sought out your personal information. The bait is frequently presented as an email to fool you into thinking it is coming from a reliable company. When you let your guard down, you inadvertently give fraudsters access to your personal information. If fraudsters manage to access your bank accounts, this might have disastrous consequences.
  9. Worms- Not so much the adorable franchise characters. They set up shop on a gadget and then spread themselves over more devices by communicating through those devices.
  10. Trojans- It seeks to blend in with other apps and open a backdoor. The name is a play on the trojan horse of old. This gives access to a vast array of harmful software that is undetectable.

 

Conclusion

There are many more malicious programs out there that you should be cautious about; these are just 10 of the worst that might infect your computer. Be sure to take precautions by installing a solid defensive system, never disclosing your personal information, and never downloading anything you do not recognize to stop your devices from coming into contact with any of these.

Malware constantly threatens your business, systems, and, most importantly, assets, regardless of its form. We continuously advise investing in your security environment and taking a proactive approach, whether through a proactive security operations partner like Protected Harbor or a proactive solution like Protected Harbor Malware Security with Threat Detection and Response.

With the help of our 2022 Cybersecurity Awareness resources, learn more about malware and other new risks.

Discover how security operations can defend your business against malware threats. Get in touch with our specialists today for a free consultation and cybersecurity assessment.