Cyber security incidents have a negative impact on everyone involved, from the customers to even the company’s employees. And after reading the headlines day after day about how personal and financial information of MILLIONS of people have been exposed for the world to see, we can’t help but wonder: What went wrong? How could it have been avoided? What’s next?
Every year cyber criminals devise new high profile and sophisticated attacks against organizations worldwide. 2017 is no exception: from complex ransomware attacks to large data breaches, it is obvious this year’s cyber-attacks have caused major damage. Below you will find the most prominent cyber security news so far and the lessons they’ve left behind.
In today’s cyber-focused environment, data breaches have become a common situation affecting many companies, whether a result of a targeted attack or an inside job. This form of cybercrime has exposed the data of billions of individuals and resulted in significant losses to the global economy.
The October BrandProtect Executive Threat Brief anticipates those attacks, and gives you and your family a quick primer on what you can do to stay safe during this new "phishing season".
Sad to say, but yesterday's Yahoo! news could not have been that surprising. Yahoo joins LinkedIn, Gmail, Twitter and Facebook in the pantheon of leading social networks that have suffered (very public) large-scale data breaches. Healthcare providers like Anthem, Blue Cross and many others are also members of this exclusive club. 500 million records is a lot of records, but truly, it's getting to the point where the world is awash in stolen records....
It is also not surprising that many the stories appearing today highlight the steps a company should take AFTER it has been hacked, like this one on MSNBC. But do stories like these really solve anything?
Pundits are fond of saying "it's not IF you'll get hacked, but WHEN you'll get hacked," but that doesn't mean that enterprise security teams should roll over and await their fate. There are lots of things that enterprises can do BEFORE they get hacked that should reduce their risks from a large number of external threats...
Regardless of their politics, the recent news of the DNC server hack, allegedly by Russian-government-backed hackers, should have security teams pulling their hair out. Why? Because the first phase of the attack used one of the oldest tricks in the book -- a phishing email attack, leveraging a copycat domain.
"For example, the first group, APT 28, often uses the same tactic: registering a domain whose name is similar to that of its target, to trick users into disclosing their passwords when logging into the wrong site. In this case, hackers set up misdepatrment.com — switching two letters — to target users of MIS Department, which manages networks for the Democratic committee." NY TImes, July 27, 2016
It should be no surprise to learn that almost every devastating cyber breach, from Target to the DNC, starts with the same exploit:
Over the past weeks there has been a lot of reporting, including these great pieces by Steve Ragan at CSOonline.com and Mathew J. Schwartz at BankInfoSecurity.com about a December 20, 2015 discovery that a database containing 191 Million voter records had been exposed online. As part of the BrandProtect 2016 Elections Project, we dug into the situation, and what it means to you.
Because of the nature of the exposure – effectively a database containing the records was left unlocked and unprotected – there is no way to know who might has downloaded the information.
Make no mistake, this is a big number. And it is an important number. Consider this: the US Census Bureau estimated that there were approximately142 Million registered voters in 2014. This means that the recent exposure of 191 million voting records is not just a large data breach. It’s a national issue -- effectively every registered voter in America has had their PII exposed... Wow...