A cyber attack occurs when a computer or a network is targeted digitally by a malicious actor. The malicious actor is called a cybercriminal. The intent behind a cyber attack is to enter and disrupt operations or gain access to sensitive information.
Because more and more businesses are operating online, they’ve become increasingly vulnerable to this kind of attack. Companies are falling prey to cyber crime every day, and some may not even be aware of it.
Types of Cyber Attacks
- Malware is a broad term for software designed to create damage or infiltrate any programmable device or network. After important information is retrieved, these cybercriminals can use it to blackmail the owners.
Malware can also prevent a business from accessing their networks and cause their systems to become dysfunctional.
- Phishing is another example of a cyber attack. The criminal sends fraudulent communications masked as requests from a legitimate entity. Upon opening this notification, the recipient either clicks on a link or opens an attachment which allows the hacker to access their personal information.
- Spoofing happens when the cybercriminal appears as a familiar figure and accesses the victim’s information with their permission, usually for financial gain. There are various other forms of spoofing, but this is the most common.
How to Prevent Cyber Attacks
Today, many businesses have since protected against these attacks. Yet the particulars of cyber crime are evolving constantly and manifest in new ways all the time. It’s best to practice the following on a consistent basis:
- Update your software regularly.
- Use complex passwords and change them often. Avoid using the same password for different applications.
- Make use of reputable Internet security software.
- Keep up to date with the threats that are out there. If you hear about something going around, familiarise yourself with the details and ensure that you are protected against it.
Steps to Take if You Fall Victim to an Attack
The best thing to do if you become a victim of a cyber attack is to swiftly contain the threat. It’s best if such a plan is put in place before the instance occurs.
Make sure to contact the relevant authorities to report the attack. Even if it might seem minor, any information can assist police with tracking down the perpetrators before more people fall prey.
A designated team should investigate what exactly has occurred and what information has been jeopardized. If any of your clients’ data has been stolen, then inform them accordingly. You might need to notify the bank or other institutions as well.
Take the necessary steps to prevent this attack from spreading or to ensure that this does not happen again. Immediately change passwords where applicable, and make sure that the new ones are strong.
If you have cyber insurance that covers the incident, then you should notify your insurance company as well. According to BST Insurance, there are many different options for coverage available.
Falling victim to cyber attacks is not a pleasant experience, and can be a very costly one too. There are various types of attacks that cyber criminals employ to infiltrate companies’ information for financial gain.
There are ways to prevent this from happening to you, but it requires specific measures and some foresight. Put together a plan before your company becomes a victim. That way you aren’t caught off guard when the hackers come knocking.