This long, chaotic, unpredictable 2020 is coming to an end, and while some people might draw a sigh of relief, IT managers won’t.
The biggest news this year has been the COVID-19 pandemic. This virus has killed hundreds of thousands of people as well as caused economies worldwide to suffer.
As if this was not enough, COVID-19 also added new threats to the security of companies’ IT systems.
While developers continue to come up with leading-edge ways to counteract cyber attacks, hackers are getting smarter when breaking into IT systems.
Can companies ever hope to win this battle? Discover here our best cybersecurity tips.
Cybersecurity Tips That Are Right For You
Now more than ever, companies must prepare for old and new challenges by investing in multi-layered IT security solutions.
Do you think that a standard, one-size-fits-all security system that works for a competitor will work for you? You might need to think again. When it comes to security, each company has very specific, nuanced needs.
And not only that: the available budget to allocate to a security network can differ massively. The main goal, of course, is always the same: safeguarding data and protecting staff and clients. The ways to reach that goal can be several, depending on each specific business.
Let’s have a look at some of the most effective, proven strategies to safeguard IT systems.
Protecting Your Cloud
Large corporations with a global reach can benefit from hosting their operations in the cloud.
Cloud deployments offer a wide range of advantages, from scalability to cost-effectiveness, but they have their vulnerabilities, too.
With COVID-19 leading many companies to offer remote working, cloud systems will be more liable to security threats than ever before.
We don’t know what course the pandemic will take next year, but it’s likely that many people will still be working from home. Similarly, companies will continue to rely on inexpensive yet efficient DaaS options.
This means that hundreds, if not thousands, of people scattered around the world might access systems and share data. Losing track of these transactions can pose a very real security risk, and its scale might grow out of proportion. Why?
Think about all the people that work for a multi-national company. We’re looking at a few tens of thousands of employees. Even if only half of them were to work remotely, the numbers would still be huge. Now, picture the amount of data and confidential information that each of those thousands of employees shares daily. If a ransomware attack was to occur, the implications for businesses could be catastrophic.
To avoid this scenario, employers must secure their clouds in the best possible way. NetDepot can help your company achieve that, with its cloud hosting services.
Featuring high performance, 99.9 percent uptime, and fast recovery, our cloud solutions can be customized to meet the unique needs of each company.
Making Authentication More Secure
Authentication should already be a top priority when it comes to ensuring system security. But, with companies promoting remote working due to the pandemic, this has become even more stringent.
Because it’s possible that more people than ever will have access to IT systems, it’s vital that companies enforce strict authentication procedures. Two-factor authentication, for example, is a great starting point. Authentication features that combine mobile apps with passwords are one of the best ways to strengthen security.
Working from home also makes another aspect very important: having a fool-proof VPN connection. Solid authentication procedures are key in this regard, too.
And because employees might want or need to connect to systems using their own device while on the go, companies need to ensure that the right policies are in place. The decision to prevent personal devices from accessing corporate systems might be unpopular, but it’s arguably the safest.
One last point to consider: updating protocols and access rights. Whenever an employee leaves the company, it’s paramount that their profile is removed, and that the rights associated with that user are revoked.
Sound like a bit too much to think about? Remember that the future of your company might be at stake. Ransomware is always around the corner and can sneak its way your systems at any time. Having a few extra security measures won’t harm you.
On the subject of ransomware, experts reckon that this threat will be even higher next year. The single most common, and deadliest, cyber threat, ransomware is not going to disappear anytime soon.
In fact, similar to a human virus, it keeps mutating and new strains appear on a regular basis. In the past few years, ransomware attacks were responsible for huge data thefts and substantial losses of money worldwide.
What are the weapons that companies can harness against ransomware attacks? The most effective one is to put in place a reliable, speedy, backup and recovery plan. In the event of a ransomware attack, having such a backup system will allow companies to swiftly recover data and get their systems up and running again. A great option for a recovery solution is backing up the data in the cloud.
Companies should also not overlook system updates and security patches. Making sure that all software and systems are running the latest version is a further step towards protection.
What About 5G?
Tech-savvy people are raving about the advent of the fifth generation of mobile and network technologies, also known as 5G. They can’t wait to enjoy even greater, faster, and better connectivity, at any time and anywhere.
Sure, the benefits that these technologies are going to bring are exciting, but what are the more concerning implications?
Leaving the 5G health-related controversies aside, it’s undeniable that this technology might present a real IT security threat. A constantly mobile, dynamic technology, 5G will be available in highly vulnerable environments such as public places, shopping malls, and hotels.
If these don’t offer a reliable, protected connection, then 5G will open up breach opportunities for hackers, and data security will be compromised.
Harnessing AI as a Cybercrime Weapon
The wonderful tool that Artificial Intelligence (AI) is can also be used by hackers to break into your systems. Like we mentioned at the beginning, the strategies that hackers use to sneak into IT infrastructures are ever-evolving. Similarly, their knowledge of the latest technologies is more and more sophisticated, and this includes AI.
With AI, hackers can imitate human behaviors, which means they can work their way into IT systems to steal data or plant malware.
How do you fight against AI cyber-attacks? With even better, more innovative AI solutions. If you want to tackle this type of threat, then you should deploy a future-proof Artificial Intelligence solution. The secret is to always stay one step ahead of the hacker community: tricky, but not impossible.
Cryptocurrency and Cryptocrime
Bitcoin, Ethereum, and the likes have been taking the online market by storm in recent years. The other side of the coin — quite literally — is the increased security risk that they pose.
Once more, COVID-19 is a new cause of worry, as CipherTrace has shown. The crypto intelligence company has recorded spikes in cryptocrime during the first five months of the pandemic.
Hackers turned to mimicking public entities and healthcare organizations to extract people’s data and steal money.
Even before the pandemic, cryptocrime was already becoming an issue. Businesses, especially those that use cryptocurrency, should put a plan of action in place to better secure their IT systems.
Who Are You Gonna Call?
Last but not least, let’s have a look at something a bit more practical. Having the right tools in place to deal with cyber attacks is not enough to sleep better at night. It’s a good start, but you also need someone to make the most of those tools.
Companies will also need the know-how, which means employing skilled staff who can help to fight cybercrime.
At the moment, the lack of security workforce around the world is concerning. If a company doesn’t have the necessary knowledge and expertise, its efforts to tackle attacks might be in vain.
For this reason, companies should look at solutions like Security as a Service. NetDepot offers a great-value package comprising of consulting, response, and recovery services.
Protect Your Business Now
These are some of the best cybersecurity tips that companies should adopt to protect their business from cyber-attacks.
For more information on cloud, security, and more, be sure to check out our blog.