Guarding Against Online Threats: Safeguarding Your Business and Home

It is estimated that a staggering 306 billion emails are sent and received every day. Imagine that slightly more than half of those emails are categorized as spam. Your anti-virus system and inbox work tirelessly to sift through the overwhelming amount of commercial, promotional, and unwanted junk mail. However, lurking within this vast sea of emails are messages with malicious intent, becoming increasingly clever in their tactics.

The rise in cyber attacks through email has become a concerning issue, with criminals taking advantage of the current COVID-19 pandemic to target both businesses and individuals. This has led to a surge in uncertainty and confusion among potential victims. These emails may appear trustworthy at first, causing users to click on a link and unknowingly allow a security breach.

It is crucial to have a clear understanding of the potential risks to your security, which we will provide guidance on below, and to take a proactive stance towards email security.

Our customized services offer top-notch anti-virus software solutions, ensuring the utmost security and tranquility for your business and residential systems. Reach out to one of our cybersecurity experts for further information.

Understanding the dangers of cyberthreats and the tactics employed by malicious individuals

Malicious actors take advantage of weaknesses in your security system, commonly referred to as vulnerabilities. Gaining a comprehensive understanding of the various forms of cyber threats and the tactics employed to carry them out is crucial for enhancing your cybersecurity.

Here, we will discuss some of the most common cyber threats that can come from your inbox, along with the various impacts that security breaches can have on a legal, economic, and social level.

The goals and characteristics of these threats differ, and there are frequently several reasons for cybercriminals to connect attacks.

Phishing, Spear Phishing, and Business Email Compromise (BEC) are all serious cybersecurity threats that individuals and businesses need to be aware of. These tactics involve deceptive techniques aimed at tricking people into revealing sensitive information or transferring funds to unauthorized parties. It is crucial to stay vigilant and take necessary precautions to protect yourself and your organization from falling victim to these malicious activities.

Phishing is a form of social engineering where criminals attempt to deceitfully acquire sensitive information. Most commonly encountered in the form of emails (or pop-ups) that seem to come from reputable sources, these messages typically ask for the confirmation of personal details.

With the advancement of technology, the level of intricacy in email scams has also risen. According to Google, a significant majority of the ‘phishing’ emails that Gmail blocked in 2019 were previously unseen.

Phishing campaigns are typically sent to a large number of recipients, while spear phishing involves highly targeted attacks on specific individuals or businesses. According to TrendMicro, a staggering 91% of targeted attacks originate from a ‘spear phishing’ email.

Business email compromise (BEC) is a targeted type of phishing where hackers impersonate high-ranking individuals, such as CEOs, to deceive and defraud employees, customers, and partners.

Deceptive practices and fraudulent activities

Likewise, spoofing is a deceitful tactic employed by malicious individuals to unfairly exploit a company or person. Commonly associated with phishing, email spoofing involves the use of a fabricated email header to deceive recipients into believing its authenticity.

These emails frequently carry harmful software that is intended to infect not only your computer but also spread throughout entire networks.

Pharming, which is also referred to as IP spoofing, entails the duplication of a genuine website. It is strongly associated with phishing and spoofing since links within emails often direct users to harmful websites that aim to collect sensitive information.

Threats like malware, viruses, and ransomware

Malware, also known as malicious software, encompasses a wide range of code that cyber attackers utilize to infiltrate networks, disrupt systems, or compromise data.

Viruses are a particular type of malware that can replicate themselves by inserting code into other programs.

Ransomware, a type of malicious software, effectively holds hostage the data of individuals or businesses. It achieves this by encrypting the data and limiting access until the ransom is paid. In the first half of 2019, there was a significant increase of 195% in ransomware attacks in the UK, according to a reliable source.

In 2019, a staggering 94% of all malware was delivered through email, according to a reliable source.

The importance of human involvement

Regardless of their intentions, both current and former employees can pose a threat to your cyber security. According to the Human Factor 2019 report by ProofPoint, the majority of cyberattacks rely on human interaction for success. Additionally, according to Verizon’s report, internal actors were responsible for a sizable portion of data breaches.

The outcomes

Protecting your personal information

From a personal or business standpoint, this can be incredibly damaging. With the acquisition of sensitive data, cybercriminals gain the ability to impersonate victims, leading to a multitude of potential consequences. Aside from the financial implications of fraud, it is important to recognize the detrimental impact of an account takeover (ATO) on a business or corporation. Both the company and the customer can be taken advantage of at the same time.

Potential harm to one’s reputation

The negative impact of a security breach, where customer data is lost or compromised, can severely damage the reputation of any business. When consumer confidence is lost, it can result in significant financial setbacks.

In addition, any interruption to services is expected to have a comparable impact. Denial-of-Service (DoS) attacks have the intention of overwhelming networks or servers with excessive information, resulting in their failure. A significant number of businesses fell victim to a DoS attack in 2018, according to a reliable source.

Adhering to regulations

The potential consequences of violating the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) are significant, both from a legal and financial standpoint. During its initial year, a significant number of complaints were filed with different GDPR enforcement agencies, along with a substantial number of recorded data breaches.

Surprisingly, a study conducted in 2018 revealed that just half of the companies felt confident in their compliance with GDPR regulations.

Monetary expense

Since 2015, the financial impact of cybercrime on UK businesses has been staggering, reaching an estimated £87 billion. This amount encompasses the money obtained from victims, along with penalties for non-compliance and the expenses related to service interruptions or downtime.

Online criminal activity poses a significant risk to the security of your home or business in today’s digital age.

Providing some context on the frequency and impact of these risks, it is estimated that hackers launch attacks approximately every 39 seconds, amounting to a staggering 2,244 attacks per day. (source).

Perhaps even more alarming is the data collected by IBM. The average time it takes to detect a breach of security is 206 days, while the average time it takes to contain the breach is a staggering 314 days.

Ensure that cyber security is given the utmost importance

By collaborating with industry leaders in computer protection, TN Computer Medics guarantees comprehensive security for your business and residential networks. Our primary antivirus services encompass:

  • Installation of anti-virus software
  • Ensuring the security of personal data and safeguarding identities
  • Software installation, upgrades, and maintenance services
  • Addressing potential threats with effective solutions
  • Continual monitoring of well-being

Continuing to enhance our security offering, we are excited to introduce two new products to our clients: Dark Web ID and BullPhish ID. These solutions have proven to be highly effective, complementing our existing partnership with ESET.

  • Dark Web ID is a highly acclaimed dark web monitoring service that takes a proactive approach to safeguarding customers against data breaches. It offers comprehensive monitoring for stolen credentials, ensuring maximum protection.
  • BullPhish ID specializes in offering simulated phishing attacks and cybersecurity awareness training to help minimize human error.

If you would like to discuss with one of our team members the most effective ways to safeguard your home or business, please feel free to contact us at +1 (615) 806-1535 or +1 (931) 315-4885. Alternatively, please fill out this form and one of our cybersecurity experts will promptly respond to your inquiry.

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