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Reducing Cyber Extortion Risk Rates To Your Business

Published: October 15, 2023 on our newsletter Security Fraud News & Alerts Newsletter.



In the business world today, securing data and systems starts with a commitment from company leaders. The recent boom in cyber extortion is lowering the survival odds for businesses of all types and sizes, especially those lacking sufficient cybersecurity. These extortion attacks hold a business captive to hacker demands, and if they aren’t met, the penalties inflicted can be enough to shut the business down.


After a successful cyberattack, the extortion threats leveled at businesses are many. They include viral infections, deleting data, publishing company trade secrets and/or the PII of customers and employees, DDoS (distributed denial of service) – and that’s just for starters. While cyber extortion continues to thrive, the suggestions below can help those tasked with cybersecurity keep those threats at bay.


WHAT CAN YOUR ORGANIZATION DO?

  • Provide cybersecurity training for all employees. Every employee is the first line of defense against cyber threats to your business. Every level of staffer, including those at the very top, need to know how to spot and stop a potential threat like email phishing.

  • Limit access to data to only those who need it for their job. Limited privileges reduce the chances of sensitive data being mishandled and vulnerable.

  • Keep software updates and security patches up-to-date. Many include fixes for flaws leaving data security and operating systems open to attack, so always apply updates and patches as quickly as possible.

  • Know the types of data your business stores. Doing so helps you understand the various levels of data sensitivity needing protection.

  • Create a plan to manage and respond to a data breach. Having a plan in place can help with a timely response and minimize damage should a breach occur.

  • Regularly backup all company data and files separate from the company network. Backups help restore data quickly and storing them separately from the network helps it stay secure from attack.

  • Use antivirus and firewall protection for all systems. Their security settings should be appropriate for your company’s needs as well as for reducing breach risks.

  • Consider cyber insurance for your business. The levels of protection vary, but typically help with the financial cost of breach incidents and cyber extortion. Many other protection options are available as well.

Keeping data secure from attack goes to the very heart of your enterprise. With threats like cyber extortion on the rise, make sure that heart is well protected.


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