Read Time: 2 Minutes
Malware today is a tool for cybercriminals. Viruses, botnets, worms and other types of “bugs” are used both in targeted and non-targeted attacks.
Today’s cybercriminals are no longer the frustrated nerd sitting at home with nothing better to do. Cybercrime is a business in itself – a business with one clear objective: to steal data and money for profit. Most malware attacks are in fact profit oriented. In fact, accoring to a study, the “Cyber Black Market” is more profitable than the global illegal drug trade.
Technically, cybercrime as a business is not very different from other businesses. There are various players selling their own expertise and tools to others in the system. Crimeware is also readily accessible in easy-to-sell pre-packaged exploit kits in case someone with less computer skills would be interested.
Businesses are an interesting target for cybercriminals since they deal with lots of money, multiple transactions and often confidential information. And many businesses unfortunately do not have the necessary safety measures in place, which leaves them open to all attacks – even the opportunistic ones looking for easy targets. Most victims are targets of opportunity rather than specially targeted against. So whether you are big or small, all that matters is how easy it is to breach your systems.
For the victimized business, the results of a malware attack can be quite devastating. Downtime of IT systems will result in downtime for the whole business. Destruction or corruption of business data, on the other hand, will directly affect both day-to-day operations and revenue. Not to mention the risk and consequences of leaking sensitive data and losing the confidence of your customers and business partners.
There are some basic steps to take to be adequately protected. The basic steps should at least include
1. Educate your employees of the risks and teach them how to use their devices securely
2. Take care of encryption for all devices
3. Keep all software – AV, operating system, and third party software – up to date
Following these steps, you and your company should at least be a much more difficult target to hit.