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New Year - New Cyber Risks?

The cycle of risk facing corporate UK continues to evolve and the pace of this evolution is most evident in the relatively new area of Cyber Liability. The speed of this change is attributed to advances in technology and proactive criminals who are constantly searching for new ways to make money.

Written by Paul Brown on 30th January 2020

New Year - New Cyber Risks?

The cycle of risk facing corporate UK continues to evolve and the pace of this evolution is most evident in the relatively new area of Cyber Liability. The speed of this change is attributed to advances in technology and proactive criminals who are constantly searching for new ways to make money.

Common Cyberattacks

Cyberattacks have been around for a few years now and the most common forms are as follows:

Hacking

Cyber criminals identify weaknesses in an organisation’s cyber security and use various methods to access sensitive data. Human error is also targeted with phishing emails seeking access to information and hacker theft where a criminal makes unauthorised payments on the company’s behalf.

Ransomware

Cyber criminals distribute malware via emails which take over a computer usually locking it and encrypting the user’s files. A ransom is then demanded to restore access to the computer.

Distributed Denial of Service

Similar to a ransomware attack criminals will bombard their target’s system with huge amounts of data in order to block access to the system before demanding a ransom to cease the attack.


Supply Chain Attacks

Supply chains offer the potential for a cyber criminal to access several targets by exploiting the weakest link.

So, what about the future?

Corporate Risk Managers need to second guess where the cyber criminal will turn theirattention and ensure that their cyber security is robust and up-to-date.

Cyber Hurricane

A so-called Cyber Hurricane is the term given to an event which takes down a whole cloud network thus disrupting organisations.

Cryptojacking or Cryptomining

This is where a hacker hijacks a computer and uses it to mine cryptocurrency, on their behalf, by either getting the victim to click on a malicious link in an email that loads cryptomining code on the computer, or by infecting a website, or maybe an online advertisement.

Unsupported Systems

The proliferation of smart devices that become connected in the "Internet of Things” increases the exposure to cyber risk, especially where connected devices might have lower levels of security. Computerised controls, including alarms, environmental controls and CCTV can provide back door access for cyber criminals because they often use cost effective, but non-supported operating systems. These unsupported systems can be open to security threats and provide easy access to computer systems, bypassing firewalls and enabling hackers to gain access to a business’s data and criminals may even be able to gain access to an organisation’s IT systems through their employees’ mobile devices, or even the company’s connected kettle.

So, what’s to be done?

Understanding the developing risks and taking appropriate steps to mitigate them will help businesses to beat cyber criminals and continue to enjoy the benefits that technology brings. However, even with the most robust security in place cyberattacks do happen and having incident response, business continuity and IT recovery plans in place will make it easier to respond

Taking a robust approach to cyber security is a must. This needs to include policies and procedures, to minimise risk and keep data and infrastructure secure, but also needs to involve training to ensure that everyone is aware of the potential threats.

Prevention is better than cure, but a combination of risk management methods and cyber insurance will serve to minimise the financial, operational and reputational impact of an attack, or breach, helping to get a business back up and running swiftly.

To obtain a Cyber Insurance quotation speak to your usual Franklands contact on 01332 545 720.

 

 

 

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