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High profile cyber hacks this year: How can we prevent them?

Published on 20 November 14
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10 years ago email security compromises were largely just an unfortunate outcome which occurred to people who unwittingly opened suspect emails, were careless with their details or who were a little too obvious with their account logins. But now cyber criminals seem to be a lot more organized. More than ever the threat of a cyber hack into a domestic or industrial network is more real, and the consequences more disturbing, than we ever could have imagined before.

We have heard in the news that high profile celebrities are finding their iTunes accounts at risk from hackers - which on its own points towards much darker scenarios in the future.How easy will it be for hackers to access more sensitive personal information by targeting individuals?

How safe are the big companies?

Whatâs more worrisome at present though, is the number of hacking incidents that bypass the security of multinational conglomerates, with a string of these attacks in 2014 proving just how vulnerable our information is, even in the safest of hands.

If even a web-based company like eBay, presumably experts in shielding themselves from this form of hacktivism, are failing to safeguard their network from malicious intruders, it raises serious questions about the capabilities of financial institutions, governments, or even military networks to avoid infiltration

Hackers are ahead of the law

Whatâs truly frightening is that this is one wave of organized crime where the perpetrators are ahead of the law. A ceaselessly evolving digital landscape means new tools, techniques and system limitations are being exploited almost daily â the bodies trying to prevent these attacks are in a constant state of playing catch up.

Consequently organizations serious about protecting their information, and who should be serious about protecting their customerâs data, need to step up their game, prioritize cyber security and invest in bolstering their defenses to be as resistant as possible to attack. And this doesnât just mean buying into domestically available software like McAfee. Considering more holistic services means that cloud, email and web security can be tackled from all angles, with services such as email security from Mimecast providing more comprehensive protection which is easily integrated across organizations by users.

Education and awareness

Educating workforces about the potential threats is proven to really reduce the possibility of and potential losses from security breaches. A pretty remarkable figure in a recent survey showed that US companies without security training for new hires reported average annual losses of $683,000 compared to $182,000 for those who do have training. Raising awareness and teaching individuals about how to protect data alleviates the risk, preventing them in the first place, and improving a companyâs ability to take action against a risk by recognizing it earlier.

And while hackersâ methods are becoming more sophisticated, the number of attempted breaches is increasing exponentially, meaning businesses are being forced to respond by recognizing threats and taking action against them.

Being aware of the dangers, and ready to pre-empt them, is half the battle. 2014 has been a wake-up call for all of us to take preventative measures to protect our customers, our data and our reputations in an online space.























10 years ago email security compromises were largely just an unfortunate outcome which occurred to people who unwittingly opened suspect emails, were careless with their details or who were a little too obvious with their account logins. But now cyber criminals seem to be a lot more organized. More than ever the threat of a cyber hack into a domestic or industrial network is more real, and the consequences more disturbing, than we ever could have imagined before.

We have heard in the news that high profile celebrities are finding their iTunes accounts at risk from hackers - which on its own points towards much darker scenarios in the future.How easy will it be for hackers to access more sensitive personal information by targeting individuals?

How safe are the big companies?



Whatâs more worrisome at present though, is the number of hacking incidents that bypass the security of multinational conglomerates, with a string of these attacks in 2014 proving just how vulnerable our information is, even in the safest of hands.

If even a web-based company like eBay, presumably experts in shielding themselves from this form of hacktivism, are failing to safeguard their network from malicious intruders, it raises serious questions about the capabilities of financial institutions, governments, or even military networks to avoid infiltration

Hackers are ahead of the law



Whatâs truly frightening is that this is one wave of organized crime where the perpetrators are ahead of the law. A ceaselessly evolving digital landscape means new tools, techniques and system limitations are being exploited almost daily â the bodies trying to prevent these attacks are in a constant state of playing catch up.

Consequently organizations serious about protecting their information, and who should be serious about protecting their customerâs data, need to step up their game, prioritize cyber security and invest in bolstering their defenses to be as resistant as possible to attack. And this doesnât just mean buying into domestically available software like McAfee. Considering more holistic services means that cloud, email and web security can be tackled from all angles, with services such as email security from Mimecast providing more comprehensive protection which is easily integrated across organizations by users.

Education and awareness



Educating workforces about the potential threats is proven to really reduce the possibility of and potential losses from security breaches. A pretty remarkable figure in a recent survey showed that US companies without security training for new hires reported average annual losses of $683,000 compared to $182,000 for those who do have training. Raising awareness and teaching individuals about how to protect data alleviates the risk, preventing them in the first place, and improving a companyâs ability to take action against a risk by recognizing it earlier.

And while hackersâ methods are becoming more sophisticated, the number of attempted breaches is increasing exponentially, meaning businesses are being forced to respond by recognizing threats and taking action against them.

Being aware of the dangers, and ready to pre-empt them, is half the battle. 2014 has been a wake-up call for all of us to take preventative measures to protect our customers, our data and our reputations in an online space.

This blog is listed under IT Security & Architecture Community

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