It seems like each month brings another story about a cybersecurity attack. The most recent major incident affected some of the most precious data to a person’s identity, which prompted yet another discussion about effective cybersecurity preparation.
Yet despite all these scary-sounding headlines, there are things you can do to protect your customers’ data. When we talk about these threats at U.S. Bank, we seek to educate, not to scare.
My advice to you: don’t freak out — inform yourself about the state of cybercrime today, and what you can do about it.
I recently talked with some of our clients at a panel discussion about cybersecurity. These clients made powerful steps toward prevention and remediation, and their thoughts may help your organization fight cyber fraud.
As new technology emerges, companies must adapt their efforts against ever-evolving threats. Here are four key takeaways from my client panel that may help.
Cybercriminals have evolved their practice in recent years. It’s no longer an ad hoc system of hackers, but more of a streamlined enterprise that combines individuals with rogue nation-states. The true impact of their actions grows each year, reaching $2 trillion by 2019.
Think of it like a corporate business model: mature, elaborate and flush with financial support. Some fraudsters have even established online training schools to educate others on how to abuse current financial and communication systems.
One frequently cited example of cybercrime, business email compromise (BEC) scams, claimed $5.3 billion in the last several years. We see clients fall victim to BEC scams, as the practice of phishing becomes more sophisticated (and more difficult to track).
The panelists, all leaders from major commercial real estate companies, noted that this level of sophistication will increase as new technology enters the market.
It’s sensible to focus cybersecurity efforts on growing online threats. But the panelists noted that companies should still keep their physical security systems in good shape. This involves building a dialog between on-site security and IT teams and any outside vendors.
The panelists dedicated much of their time to physical security efforts, and predicted even further changes in the next several years.
Computers get compromised. It’s a rule of life in the digital era, and at some point your organization will need to address an attack. Preventive practices help stop attacks, but they don’t help if a hacker gets through. The panelists advocated for a combined prevention/remediation strategy to limit any damage.
That public Wi-Fi network you’re using at the coffee shop? Assume that it’s compromised, and take all necessary steps to prevent data hacks. That includes using virtual private networks (VPN) whenever sending sensitive data, or simply waiting until you’re on a secure network to conduct transactions.
We’re all becoming more hyper-connected, but these connections come at a cost. Check out some additional tips on securing your networks and promoting a safer online environment.