Nowadays, the Internet is a necessity and part of nearly everyone’s life. In recent years, however, the Internet is far more like the Wild West than it is a utopian metropolis. There can be a lot of confusion about the rules of the Internet, and it still poses a lot of risks. With ever-increasing remote work and reliance on digital devices, cyber threats are have become more sophisticated and intense. Knowing where dangers may arise, and more importantly, how to avoid them, is imperative. Investing in IT security services is an excellent first step so start searching for IT companies near me to make IT security easier. This list includes five ways your digital safety can be compromised.

Social engineering

Around a third of all breaches in 2020 incorporated social engineering techniques, namely phishing. Phishing is a process where an attacker sends a misleading message to trick the recipient into revealing sensitive information. Social engineering methods include phishing emails, scareware, and quid pro quo, among others, all of which manipulate users towards specific traps.

It is estimated that spear-phishing attacks alone account for 95% of all breaches in enterprise networks. 43% of workers say they have committed mistakes that compromised cybersecurity. One example of this was when cybercriminals were able to steal $2.3m from a Texas school using a forged email from WHO in order to obtain personal information.

Businesses and IT security services can prevent social engineering scams by implementing Zero Standing Privileges. Users are granted access privileges only for as long as they need to complete the task at hand. This way, even if hackers obtain the credentials, they will not be able to access internal systems and sensitive data.

a man concerned about cyber security and IT services

Ransomware is software that steals and encrypts data, then demands payment in exchange for its release. Ransomware is the third most prevalent form of malware used in data breaches, accounting for 22% of incidents. 

In 2020, hackers compromised COVID-19 research data and demanded $1.14 million from the University of California, attacked photography company Canon, and even coordinated attacks resulting in death. A hospital in Germany was targeted for ransom, where, as a result, it had its patient care systems disabled. This, unfortunately, led to one patient’s death.

DDoS Attacks

A DDoS attack involves flooding a network with malicious traffic to make it incapable of working or communicating as it should. It causes the site’s normal traffic, or legitimate packets, to cease.

Remote working is becoming increasingly popular among organizations. Because of the increased demand for digital services and the increased online traffic, they are more vulnerable to cybercrime. DDoS attacks are not expensive to perform, so DDoS-for-hire services using public clouds are on the rise. With their accessibility growing and impact widening, they are quickly becoming one of the largest cyber security threats. 

Third-Party Vulnerability

Retailers often turn to third parties to handle payment processing services. Due to this, they often assume they are not liable if there is a data breach. It is important to note, however, that using a third-party vendor does not absolve a company of responsibility for a data breach.

It is still possible for third parties to compromise private information, such as Social Security or credit card numbers, even when companies do not directly handle them. In order to steal data, hackers target third-party vendors with malware. An example is the high-profile Target breach of 2013.

If a data breach occurs, the business that contracts with the vendor is still obligated to notify their clients and regulators, even if the attack originated with a third party. Fines and penalties can range from a few thousand dollars to millions, depending on the situation. It is important to work with third-party providers you can trust and rely on, especially when handling other people’s personal information.

Cloud computing vulnerabilities

The cloud is used more today than ever before. The vast amount of information stored in the cloud makes it a very attractive target for cyberattacks. In order to enter user accounts, hackers check for cloud servers with no password, accessing unpatched systems using brute-force attacks. Others use cloud systems for cryptojacking or coordinated DDoS attacks, while others plant ransomware or steal sensitive data.

In order to strengthen the cloud computing defenses in the future, stakeholders should be aware of how cloud storage is configured, how APIs are secured, and how end-users interact with cloud devices.

Why We Need IT Security Services

In a very short period of time, many companies were forced into remote working environments. Because most organizations were not ready for this, their remote networking capabilities weren’t as protected as their on-site IT infrastructure. The rapid shift has created numerous unsecured gaps that are constantly exploited by malicious parties.

Now more than ever, no matter your industry, whether you are a CNC plastic machining shop, a local painter, or even a web design company, odds are you have sensitive information worth protecting. IT Security Services are built to protect you, your company, and your overall well-being from the threat of being compromised.