Recent news and reports from all over the world has been focusing on the increasing company security breaches and the often devastating consequences these intrusions can have on a company’s data and its customers. However, one area that is often overlooked is the aspect of testing the security of a company’s website. It’s easy to assume that by creating the best possible website design that your company will be protected against any security breaches – but the reality is that websites are only half the battle. Effective testing is needed in order to prevent a company from suffering a breach and its subsequent impact to a company, its customers and the businesses that interact with the company’s customers.
There are a number of different ways that a company can be targeted by hackers and this can range from a simple software vulnerability to the installation of monitoring software and malware. In some cases, company security breaches can even result from a deliberate attack by a group of hackers or attackers. Regardless of the type of compromise that takes place, the damage is often catastrophic. The impact of a hacking attack can be difficult to predict, however, many times it can result in serious financial loss, product damage and employee injury.
Many security experts agree that the most important way in which companies can protect their business and protect their confidential information is to regularly test their systems for vulnerabilities. By doing this, the company is better able to identify and respond to potential cyber attacks and the means by which they might occur. Regular company security tests can help identify gaps in security practices and weak areas within the company. By identifying these weak areas and making sure that appropriate measures are put in place, companies are greatly reducing the amount of potential exposure to cyber attacks. This is particularly true if the tests are conducted regularly review the progress of the security practices.
Company Security Breaches
Hackers rely on very cleverly devised phishing attacks to try and infiltrate businesses. These hackers use extremely personalized and deceptive software to try and trick company employees into revealing confidential data. The software can mimic legitimate corporate email, as well as fake employee email that are sent to employees as thank you notes or other genuine correspondence. Some phishing attacks might also use spoofing techniques to make employees think the emails they’re receiving are from reputable sources, when in fact they’re coming from a hacker’s personal computer. While there are steps a business can take to prevent these kind of attacks, many companies simply do not have enough of a security culture built-in to reduce the risk of these kinds of security breaches.
Other types of company security breaches might involve data breach. In this situation, hackers gain access to a company’s confidential data by posing as a legitimate employee. This might include bank account numbers, employee details or other sensitive information. An employee might pass off this sensitive data as being work-related when it’s in fact the hackers’ intention to use the information for their own purposes. Data breach can lead to severe legal issues and huge financial losses for the company if the employee’s password is stolen and used to access company property.
One example of the latter was recently reported in an article in The New York Times: An international team of cyber criminals used a social media platform to target and attack a British university’s scientific staff. The cyber criminals gained access to the unencrypted personal data of around twenty scientists who worked on digital research and stole their accounts. After gaining access, the hackers used the personal data to create numerous fake accounts, and began sending out spam to a number of different addresses which the real school knew were fake. Although the company had precautions in place to stop this kind of thing from happening, it took one too many lapses in communication between staff, and the criminals got away with it.