What’s Causing Security Breaches and What Can Be Done

06 March 2018

We are inundated daily with the latest problems in the world of cybersecurity. It’s getting to a point where people, companies, and even mainstream media are becoming numb to the latest breach or malicious attack. The reality is that while the world is advancing daily in the world of technology, we are also creating more opportunities for breaches.

A recent article from Forbes outlines the key factors that are changing the cybersecurity landscape—and these factors align closely with what we’re seeing day-to-day with our cybersecurity clients. From our perspective, there are three key factors that are driving these daily issues.

1. There’s more technology than ever, and more technology brings greater exposure and more entry points for security breaches. This is largely the result of the rapid growth of the Internet of Things, including everything from fitness trackers to self-driving cars. In fact, Forbes revealed that 86 percent of local governments say they have already experiences an IoT-related security breach, and we can assume that number is relatively high across all industries. 

Most companies aren’t diligently monitoring all devices on their networks, outside of company PCs, tablets and smartphones. Vulnerability management solutions are a great way to fill this gap, helping companies monitor not only the devices on the networks, but identify and remediate the known vulnerabilities on each device. With more technology comes greater responsibility to know what devices are on your network, assess their risk levels, and mitigate those risks.

2. Attack motivations are constantly changing, so its important to be prepared for attacks of all kinds. In 2017, ransomware motivated 50 percent of attacks in the U.S.—and many of the hackers got the money they were seeking, with ransom payments totaling more than $1 billion. Hacktivism was also a large motivator for attacks last year, but the 2018 landscape could be completely different. The point is that we don’t know where the next attack will come from or what will motivate it, so don’t be complacent with any component of your security posture.

Often organizations who do the bare minimum, such meeting required compliance audits and installing firewalls, are surprised when they are the victim of an attack. But cybersecurity is much more than audits and firewalls, which is why a comprehensive security plan covering all aspects of your security posture should be a requirement, not a luxury.

3. Cybersecurity skills are in short supply and are often too expensive and out of reach for mid-sized enterprises and small businesses.Security professionals with the right expertise and experience are taken by organizations with much deeper pockets, and many organizations simply can’t afford to have an expert on staff or outsource these services for a reasonable cost.

This phenomenon also applies to the latest cybersecurity solutions and technologies, which are often outside the budget for mid-sized enterprises, SMBs, and government offices. As a result, organizations think they are protecting themselves with the bare minimum in security skills and solutions, when, in reality ,they are only as strong as the weakest link in the chain.

Combatting these factors is all about having a plan, investing to properly put it in place, and continuing to monitor your security posture and stay up to date. Start by preparing for the worst with a protection strategy and emergency plans. Then, practice this plan with regular testing and employee training. And finally, take two of the most crucial steps that are often overlooked: automate and upgrade. Use solutions that automate the process of identifying risks and cyber threats, then keep up with your security posture with regular upgrades, updates, and remediation.

Security isn’t a task you complete, it is a continuous and evolving duty that demands attention. IGI delivers a well-rounded suite of cybersecurity products and services that help you address your security issues and execute a successful security plan. From services such as security audits and employee training, to our unique Nodeware™ automated security solution, contact us to improve your security posture today.