Thousands of Internet users’ systems all over the world are hacked every day. In the past few years, there has been a substantial rise in hacker activity from overseas. This makes strong cyber security a prerequisite to connecting your devices to the Internet. As more cyberattacks originate from international locations, businesses must make sure that their antivirus protection and other security paradigms are strong enough to handle the increased threat. Keep the following things in mind about this wave of international computer hacking.
It Can Be Huge in Scope
According to a 2012 Verizon investigation, 174 million records were compromised from hundreds of separate companies. Almost all of these companies were discovered to have had shortcomings in their own cyber-security measures. While exact estimates on this sort of activity are obviously hard to come by, Interpol and other organizations have released numbers that peg the approximate damage to businesses in the tens of billions of dollars annually. In most cases, someone at the organization brings a virus or other malware into the system because they have either not been trained properly or security is not at an adequate level. This virus then acts as a door that lets hackers into the system — where they can wreak havoc and steal data.
No One Is Immune
As demonstrated by a slew of major hacks of some of the largest online companies, such as Yahoo! and LinkedIn, there is no organization too large to suffer from cyber-threats. However, large businesses are not always the targets, and smaller businesses have just as much to fear. For one thing, their expertise in security and antivirus measures is not likely to be as high or their budget for establishing proper digital security measures as expansive. Consequently, sometimes smaller businesses decide to cut corners, but this is never a good solution. The businesses that do this fail to grasp that even if they are fairly small and insignificant targets, all it takes is one serious breach to have major consequences. The results can range from monetary theft, legal liability, reputation damage or physical damage to the computer systems themselves.
Where It Comes From
According to USA Today, China takes the lead in the origination of most of today’s cyber infractions, but it is certainly not the only country from which these sophisticated hacks arise. As the general public becomes more technologically savvy, with better and more frequent access to the digital realm, cybercrime will only continue to rise. Thus, security measures must evolve to counteract this.
How to Protect Yourself
Given this rise in threats to the security of your digital network, how should your business respond? The first step is to take it seriously. Make an honest appraisal of your security protocols, and if you are vulnerable, you should immediately begin working on a plan to address the most glaring flaws. In most cases, this begins with a thorough review of your antivirus software. Is it installed on all the devices that connect to your network? Have the installations and virus definitions been kept up-to-date? If they have, you are significantly less vulnerable to international hacking, as most of these threats are automated in nature and rely on targets not having security measures.
Perform an audit of your computer security immediately if you want to remain safe from the rising threat of international hackers eager to damage your website and company. Don’t forget to also include an anti-malware and anti-spyware solution alongside your antivirus software for the best results.
Marie Gannett has been blogging about computer security issues for several years. She uses Trend Micro Security Software to keep her system safe from threats.