You probably know that a successful cyber attack on your MSP business can jeopardize activities and lead to extensive losses. However, most business owners tend to concentrate on how to prevent these attacks without considering other variables that are equally imperative. These variables include cyber criminals’ motives and the types of attacks. Comprehensive knowledge of pertinent motives and the nature of the attacks puts you at a better position to formulate feasible security protocols. Notably, the most important consideration is to always be prepared for attacks as hackers strike without prior notice.
What Motives Drive Cyber Criminals?
Financial gain is a common cyber attack motive. In this case, cyber criminals encrypt important business data and force victims to pay before decrypting the same. Others resort to extreme measures like hacking into bank accounts and making withdrawals. Anger and reprisal also motivate dissatisfied individuals to attack your business. For instance, you may have fired some employees or made changes in pricing to the dissatisfaction of the affected individuals. The affected parties become enemies and are very much likely to instigate attacks. Other attacks are usually casual; the perpetrators attack businesses for fun and to show off their skills.
Common Types of Cyber Attacks
Phishing involves cyber criminals using seemingly legit websites to conduct fraudulent activities. Your employees are at a greater risk of being victims of the same. For instance, an unsuspecting employee may receive an email redirecting him to a website where he is asked to provide sensitive information like user authentication credentials. The hackers then use the information to infiltrate your system. Your employees need adequate sensitization on this matter to ensure that they don’t fall victim.
Malware and Ransomware
Malware involves cyber criminals introducing malicious programs into your system to gain access or cause harm. The use of malicious email attachments is a common approach in this case. Ransomware attacks use the same protocols but are financially motivated. Cyber criminals use malicious software to encrypt business data and ask for ransom payments before releasing the decryption code. Without the code, you may never get your data back; victims are eventually forced to pay.
Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS)
DDoS involves cyber criminals intentionally instigating system traffic on your network; they overload your server with requests. A flooded server compromises system security as components become vulnerable to attacks. Hackers are very good at taking advantage of such system vulnerabilities.
Advanced Persistent Threats (APT)
This is not a one-time attack like most of the other types. In this case, criminals conduct a systematic long-term attack on your system. The method is designed to prevent detection until the ultimate goal is achieved. These attacks are usually split into various stages, which may include reconnaissance, incursion, data capture and ex-filtration.
What Can You Do To Safeguard Your Business?
Try Multifactor Authentication
Hackers continue to devise sophisticated attack methods and your password requirement may not be enough to stop them. However, with multi-factor authentication, you have a better chance of safeguarding your system. To implement this, you’ll have to extend user authentication beyond the mere use of passwords. Users can use secret words or other autonomous elements to access the system.
Make Sure Your Computers are Updated Constantly
Ignoring system update notifications exposes your business to potential attacks. Make sure your antivirus software, operating systems, firewalls, browsers and other integral system components are up to date. Outdated programs are easy targets for hackers.
Sensitize your Workforce
Attacks like phishing and malware take advantage of your employees’ limited knowledge of security threats. Therefore, it’s vital for every business to sensitize employees on system security issues including all information about cyber-criminal activities. This will limit the loss of user credentials or accidental sharing of the same.
In sum, if you’re having trouble implementing most of these security measures, it’s time to get an expert on board. Various companies offer reliable IT support services including security solutions. Reliable experts conduct comprehensive system assessments to identify vulnerabilities and potential cyber attack and implement feasible solutions. Outsourced services also guarantee a proactive approach to system security.