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The most common cyber security threats to your business

Key Points

  • Hacking
  • Phishing
  • Malware
  • Ransomware
  • IT Provider

As a provider of managed IT services UK, we’ve seen how compromised IT security can negatively impact businesses. One of the roles we perform for our clients is an advisory service, helping them to identify security risks and avoid the pitfalls of cyber crime.

KPMG recently reported that the value of fraud committed in the UK in 2016 topped £1bn for the first time since 2011, prompting a warning about increasing cyber crime and the risk of large-scale scams. Already this year, Europe has fallen victim to two major ransomware incidents, known as the ‘WannaCry’ (May 2017) and ‘Petya’ (June 2017) attacks.

If you own or run a business, here are a few of the cyber threats that you should be aware of:

Hacking

Hacking is when deliberate and malicious actions grant unauthorised access to a computer, network or online account.

Hackers find weaknesses in your security protocols and then create a portal through which they can search for and attain your private information and use it for malicious means.

Phishing

Phishing is a very real threat for both businesses and members of the general public. This is one of the most common cyber crimes out there – criminals find it easy to do and it can yield maximum benefits with little work involved. Usually, you’ll receive a fake email that appears to be from a legitimate company, such as your bank. It will normally include a link with an action that you need to take, for example: “Click here to validate that your account is still active”. Once criminals get your information (entered by you online), they can access your profile and, drain your accounts.

Malware

This pertains to software that maliciously damages your computer. This includes viruses, worms, spyware and Trojan horses. Malware is very common, but in spite of its regular occurrences, businesses regularly fall victim to attacks. Malware infects your computer or network by causing pop-up messages with false information, such as telling you to reformat your hard drive. When you do this, you lose valuable information. Other forms of malware steal data, alter files, send mails on your behalf, and even hijack your computer and its software.

Ransomware

As a more sophisticated type of malware, ransomware restricts access to your computer or its files. With a pop-up message that demands payment, you’ll be asked to pay the “ransom” in order to gain access to your data. Whilst you might be tempted to unlock your files by paying, we advise that you avoid this extortion by backing up your files just in case. By carrying out regular backups, should ransomware occur, you could format your computer without losing your valuable files. If you do become infected with ransomware, do unlink yourself from any servers your computer is linked to.

Boost your cyber security with the righT IT

Every IT system is susceptible to cyber crimes, but it’s how you manage and set up your IT that will lessen your risks. With this in mind, we strongly recommend that all businesses have a reputable IT provider to implement and manage IT infrastructure n a way that works to minimise potential threats.

For more on what we could do to give your network security a boost, please click here: https://www.conosco.com/what-we-do/it-services/.