Unknowingly clicking on an email attachment containing malware has the power to corrupt your entire system and wipe out all of your highly sensitive data.
Now that’s frightening.
Cybercriminals are now finding more ways to steal money, highly sensitive data, and interrupt your business operations. That is why it’s crucial for you to protect your business and your customers from these types of threats.
Allow us to share with you three tips that you can use to defend your business from modern-day cyber attacks.
1. Perform Security Testing
One of the best defenses against cyber-attacks is to set up a defense mechanism that will detect threats before they even happen. You can do that by identifying vulnerabilities in your system.
Some vulnerabilities might only appear after a cyber-attack simulation or a test run, and this is why security testing is an essential factor in establishing the online security of your business.
For instance, one way of securing your website is by restricting access to specific pages through secure data access by catalog permissions.
Your web hosting and content management systems (CMS) should also be tested for possible security cracks that hackers can slip through.
You can work with third-party cybersecurity services like Bulletproof to help you with vulnerability assessment and penetration testing.
With cybersecurity features like hack simulations and a review of your firewall infrastructure, operating system, and server, this helps you identify system vulnerabilities that you need to fix and determine the level of risk to cyber-attacks.
Keep in mind that as your network changes and grows, so will the new and more sophisticated cyber-attacks. It’s because of this that you need to run vulnerability assessments as part of your first line of defense, and long-term cybersecurity game plan.
2. Guard Against Zero-Day Attacks
If you think that cybersecurity companies are the only ones fighting off cybercriminals, then think again. Even software developers are hard at work to protect their security solutions from cyber-attacks.
After all, the security and safety of their products can have a significant impact on retaining their customers, and this is why sellers include security patches in their solutions through regular software updates.
Security patches are intended to detect and fix vulnerabilities in your security system in the older software versions.
The first approach you should take should be to update your security software and applications regularly to keep yourself protected.
However, there is a kind of cyber-attack that even regular software updates have difficulty stopping, and that is zero-day attacks.
Zero-day attacks target and exploit security vulnerabilities as soon as they’re detected, not allowing software developers and security companies enough time to respond.
This type of attack is one of the most dangerous threats to your business and your customers.
The challenge, however, is remembering to regularly update your security software and apps as soon as they are available.
A sure-fire way to never miss your updates is to use apps to manage software patches automatically.
Here are some other tips to help you mitigate exposure to the risks that zero-day attacks pose:
- Exercise safe browsing habits to minimize the dangers of cyber-attacks such as malware, spyware, virus, ransomware, etc. and protect your personal information.
- Configure the security settings for your internet browser, security software, and operating system.
- Always check for security patches and software updates by downloading the most recent versions. Doing so will fix bugs that older software versions might have missed.
- Avoid downloading or opening files and attachments from unknown sources.
However, there might not be a fail-safe method to stop zero-day attacks, but a way to nullify its impact is by using Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) services.
SIEM services offer 24/7 incident response, real-time monitoring, and lets you see a full picture view of your network by collecting the security log data from host operating systems, many software elements and applications, and security controls.
SIEM can also analyze substantial security log data to detect potential attacks and security threats.
3. Protect from Man-in-the-Middle Attacks
A Man-in-the-Middle (MitM) attack is a term for a kind of cyber-attack wherein cybercriminals intercept the conversation between two parties, usually an application and a user, with the purpose of eavesdropping or impersonating either one of the parties.
This type of attack aims to make the exchange of information between the two parties appear normal and steal highly sensitive details such as credit card numbers and login credentials.
Stolen information from MitM attacks can be used for unauthorized fund transfers, illegal password changes, and identity theft (among other things), which is why common targets are users of ecommerce sites, financial applications or websites where a login is required.
So, the best course of action is to protect your information from being stolen during an MitM attack by using encryption.
Encryption keeps data theft from happening by turning readable data into a code, and a decryption key can only decode this.
Another way to protect your business using encryption is with SSL certificates, and you’ll know a website has one if it shows HTTPS instead of HTTP.
SSL certificates secure connections and encrypt the information (payment details, passwords, etc.) that are exchanged on your website.
For ecommerce sites, it can also build customers’ trust since savvy users know that transacting with websites that have SSL certificates will keep their personal information safe.
Here are additional tips to keep your business and personal information, devices, and connections protected from MitM attacks:
- Wi-Fi networks. To keep your Wi-Fi network secure, make strong passwords using as many unique characters as possible for your router and update usernames and passwords, plus all the devices that are connected to the network.
- Internet Security. MitB attacks are typically executed by releasing malware, so installing internet security solutions is a great way to detect and prevent this kind of threat.
- Emails. Emails are also common modes of virus and malware delivery. Exercise caution when opening emails that ask you to reset or update your login credentials and avoid clicking on links and downloading attachments.
To be on the safe side, instead of opening the link within the email, manually type in the site address in the browser.
- Public Networks. Never connect directly to public or unsecured networks.
Install a VPN or virtual private network to ensure that the connection between your server and browsers is secure.
It’s crucial to understand how man-in-the-middle attacks happen so you can take the necessary steps to prevent them from happening and protect your highly-sensitive information.
As a business owner, one of your top priorities is to invest in the security of your business assets and customers from various cyber threats.
The tips discussed here are just three out of the many strategies you can equip yourself to bulletproof your business against modern-day cyber-attacks.
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