Cybersecurity threats are a growing concern for businesses in the United States. As technology advances, the risk of cyberattacks increases, leaving businesses vulnerable to a cyber threat landscape with no end in sight.
Without knowing and understanding what these threats are, companies risk weakening their information security measures, leaving the door open for cyber threats to enter. With that being said, there are five prominent threats that US organizations need to be on the lookout for to protect their sensitive data and business continuity.
1. Phishing attacks
Phishing (a form of social engineering attack) involves deceiving people into giving away sensitive information or clicking on malicious links. Threat actors can use fraudulent emails and text messages to trick victims, often pretending to be a trusted employee or another entity. The goal of these attacks is to gain access to financial, personal, or sensitive data.
The impact of phishing emails and attacks on a business can be severe. It can lead to an average of $1.4 million in financial losses, data breaches, and damage to the company’s reputation. In certain cases, it can also lead to legal actions.
Businesses should know about phishing and take steps to protect their data, such as educating employees on best practices and implementing strong authentication processes. Doing so can help to reduce the chances of a successful attack and the ensuing damage.
Malware includes malicious software that can be used to cause harm or steal information from businesses and individuals. Cybersecurity experts classify malware into various categories, each one with its own method of attack.
Common types of malware include:
The problem with malware (and the entire cyber threat landscape) is that it is constantly evolving. Security risks have grown more intuitive, making it impossible for organizations to be truly threat-proof. However, from installing anti-malware software to exercising caution when using company networks, there are ways to protect systems from malware. Businesses and their staff should be taking steps to implement these solutions into their operations and use them effectively.
3. Ransomware attacks
66% of businesses faced ransomware in the past twelve months, making it one of the top cybersecurity threats for US businesses. Ransomware is malware typically launched through phishing attacks. It encrypts your files and data before the attacker demands you pay a ransom for a decryption key. It can also lock your computer systems.
The aim of these attacks is to twist companies’ arms and force them to pay money for the sake of their information and reputation. Excluding following cybersecurity best practices, such as knowing how to identify a scam message, regularly backing up your data to an external storage solution can provide you with an additional copy of your customer’s personal information and company data.
This is vital in ensuring that your business can continue operating under the protection of backup plans.
4. Zero-day exploits
One of the lesser-known top cybersecurity threats, zero-day exploits take advantage of a previously unknown vulnerability in a program that has been rolled out to the public. These attacks occur after cybercriminals discover a weakness in the application and develop a form of malware that can exploit it before it is fixed.
Zero-day attacks are particularly dangerous, especially as 40% of the total number of them in the past ten years “occurred in 2021”. Also, they often go unnoticed until it is too late, blindsiding everyone from the software’s vendors to users. The best way to protect your company against these types of threats is to take preventative measures. This may include securing access points, implementing firewalls, vetting digital tools carefully before you deploy them, and more.
5. Internal threats
Internal threats are a major concern for all security systems. These threats come from within a business and can range from malicious attacks carried out by disgruntled employees to careless mistakes caused by human error. These types of threats can be devastating for businesses, leading to the loss or theft of personal data, unauthorized access to corporate networks, and breaches that result in leaked data.
What’s more, in the case of malicious employees, these threats can be difficult to detect, as their authorized credentials can make their activity appear legitimate.
To help reduce the likelihood of encountering internal threats, companies can:
Dynamic cybersecurity for Orange County and beyond
Nowadays, with the market’s reliance on Internet of Things (IoT) devices and a growing workforce, US businesses are forced to constantly update their security protocols to keep up with the ever-evolving cyber threat landscape. It is not something you can leave for another day. Security risks do not rest, and neither should your business’s cybersecurity.
The cybersecurity consulting services at Everconnect can offer you advice and support on a range of the latest security solutions, from cloud security to incident response plans. Talk to the Everconnect team today to stay ahead of the latest cybersecurity threats and keep your organization protected.