At first glance, cyber security might seem like it’s easy or even straightforward. Most professionals can tell you that it most certainly is not; the field is often a complex labyrinth of various methodologies, processes, policies, and procedures, all sandwiched together with operational constraints such as time and funding. There are also a lot of myths and secrets swirling throughout the field; there’s a reason 21st century security is sometimes called “the black art.” No matter if you’re a novice or a seasoned professional, there are probably quite a few things you don’t know about cyber security and should. Here are four of them.
4. The Biggest Threat Isn’t What You Think
While news of a new vulnerability in Microsoft’s latest operating system or a new strain of ransomware ripping through organization after organization can set off a panic, most fears surrounding security threats are actually misplaced. Think about this: A vulnerability may be exploited by a member of Anonymous, but how did they know to target your system there? What about the malware that stole, then corrupted thousands of files full of sensitive customer data—where did it come from? In some cases, there may be an outside source that just happened to get lucky, but often, cyberattacks originate from within an organization.
While it’s unlikely your employees are secretly hackers in their spare time, an unsuspecting or uninformed employee can fall victim to phishing or social engineering scams, inadvertently compromising your company’s security. In the most nefarious cases, an employee intentionally hacks into the system to corrupt files or steal data—or they give sensitive information to a third party. Part of cyber security, then, is actually staff education and ensuring that your hiring process screens potential employees for ethical conduct!
3. The Internet of Things Is Changing the Game
As more people, organizations, and other entities come online, cyber security will be increasingly threatened. This is already visible in the trajectory of the last 20 years or so: whereas viruses were a major concern in a previous era, today’s professionals must focus on hackers more than anything else. An increasingly mobile world has meant an increasing threat of hackers—smartphones, tablets, laptops, and computers are all at risk of being hacked at any time. With the surge in people working from home due to COVID-19, there is also a risk from connected IOT in the home (think smart door locks, TVs, etc.). As the world has become more connected and more mobile, security has decreased, and the trend is likely to continue. The type of threats, the sophistication of threats, and even the attack surface is increasing, making the job of cyber security ever more difficult.
2. Tools Are Just Tools
While the right tools are unarguably important for security professionals, a tool being operated by an uninformed or untrained employee is not much better than no tool at all. Training and staff education should be a major focus for any firm concerned about cyber security—and not just for the professionals involved in keeping your organization safe from attack. Cyber awareness training for all staff is a must! Negligent staff are often just as big a risk as outside threats, so ensure everyone is kept up-to-date on policies and best practices. And if you do have new tools to share with your security team, invest in training to ensure they’re up-to-date and confident in using the tool effectively.
1. Some Things Slip Through
Cyber security professionals know that the sheer number of avenues for attack preclude 100% security; it’s simply not possible. Even the best defenses will sometimes fail. What is important is how a business reacts to an attack. Does your business have a breach readiness plan? Are attacks in your firm being managed in an effective and efficient manner? Are you regularly patching and updating your systems? With some reports indicating that recurrent attacks are not effectively looked to and remediated up to 70% of the time, it’s obvious that ensuring effective management of remediation activities should be a top priority!
If any of these 4 things are a challenge for you and your organization, contact Uzado today. Uzado is here to help with your cyber security challenges. Start by downloading our free whitepaper on vulnerability remediation.