Understanding Cybersecurity and Its Role in the IT World

In a recent survey, only 28% of small business owners said they have a cyber attack response plan. That helps explain why 14% of small businesses became hacking victims in the 3rd quarter of 2020.

Unfortunately, many types of cybersecurity attacks are enough to bankrupt SMBs. In fact, these crimes led to the permanent closure of six in 10 victimized SMBs within six months.

With that said, it’s a must to familiarize yourself with how your business can become a cyber victim. This guide rounds up the most common types of small business data breaches and attacks, so be sure to read on.

1. Phishing Scams

A report revealed that in May 2021 alone, phishing cases jumped by 440% from the previous month.

Of the most targeted brands, PayPal is one of the most notable. The company reported seeing an increase of 1,834% in phishing activities. This further proves that financial gains fuel the majority of phishing crimes.

Phishing remains rampant because it targets humans more than technological flaws. Instead, it relies on the power of persuasion or suggestion to entice a user to fall victim to the scam.

For example, phishing emails often contain mimicked brand logos and digital signatures. These make them appear legitimate, official, or trustworthy. Unfortunately, they’re not, and the links or attachments they contain are often malicious.

Moreover, according to Cyberpion, criminals can control and abuse branded assets. So, your company could also become a phishing victim if a threat actor steals your logos or signature. For instance, they may use your signature to pose as you and scam clients or other people you work with.

2. Data Breach

In the US alone, there were almost 4,000 data breaches reported to have occurred in 2020. These types of cyberattacks compromised a staggering 37 billion records.

Hacking and malware attacks are some of the chief culprits behind data breaches. Loss of portable devices and unintentional disclosures are also common causes.

Like phishing, data breaches are often financially driven. However, some are for the sake of cyberterrorism. Other companies may also attack their competitors for reasons like espionage and sabotage.

3. Ransomware Attacks

Ransomware is malware that takes over an entire system, user account, or folder. The malware encrypts the data and prohibits access to it until the user pays the ransom.

Ransomware attacks are now so common that millions of dollars go into paying them. In 2020 alone, victims paid almost $350 million worth of cryptocurrency for ransom.

4. Cyber Hijacking

Cyber hijacking is also known as computer and network hijacking. It’s a type of attack in which the criminal takes over entire computer systems or networks.

Attackers can hijack browsers, domains, domain name systems (DNS), and websites. They can also hijack Internet Protocols and wired and wireless internet systems.

Many hijackers choose these stealth methods of attacks to eavesdrop and collect data. They can also inject malware into hijacked systems to steal information. Others re-direct users to malware-infected sites.

5. Insider Attacks

An insider attack is a cyber-attack launched by someone connected to the target. It can be a current or former disgruntled employee, a business partner, or even a board member.

An insider can steal data with malicious intent, such as to sell the information. It can also be someone who steals company funds or corporate secrets. However, some insider threats may also be innocent pawns who unintentionally expose data.

Don’t Let These Types of Cybersecurity Attacks Make You Go Bankrupt

Keep in mind that cybercrime could cost the world $10.5 trillion each year, starting in 2025. The last thing you want is for your own business to become part of that statistic. That’s why, as early as now, you must protect your assets from the worst types of cybersecurity attacks.

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