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Macro Systems Blog

2017 Security Lessons We Can Learn From

2017 Security Lessons We Can Learn From

2017 was litered with security issues ranging from threats and minor attacks to significant security breaches. A lot can learned from the misfortunes of other ill-prepared businesses about how to prepare for and deal with cybersecurity problems.

Track Your Data
The Yahoo and Equifax data breaches resulted in many individuals losing track of their data and how it’s utilized online. These breaches made it crystal clear that even some of the largest businesses in the world aren’t immune to the perils of the Internet. In some instances, these breaches remained unannounced for months.

This observation resulted in the belief that small and medium-sized companies must be much more considerate with their data than they previously had been. If large organizations can be toppled by security threats, then so too can small organizations because they probably have smaller security budgets and less comprehensive solutions in place. Thus, a small company should also take as many measures as possible if it hopes to stay.

Patches Are Very, Very Important
Patches and security updates are one of the greatest ways to prevent data breaches. In the Equifax case mentioned above, it would have been critical. Patches are implemented by developers with the sole intent of resolving holes in their solutions. However, 2017 has revealed that some businesses need to place a greater priority on patching; many of the issues that 2017 saw could have been prevented with proactive patching.

Everything begins with the developers, though. If the developers don’t issue the patches and updates in the required timetable, the problems posed by the threats have more than enough of time to cause as much damage as possible. For example: the bug that allowed the EternalBlue exploit wasn’t patched until a month after the issue had become recognized. The exploit was then used alongside other threats, like WannaCry and NotPetya, to cause even more trouble for organizations and individuals.

As a result, we highly recommend that you apply patches as soon as possible after they are released. We also recommend that you maintain a consistent patching schedule, routinely deploying them as you can. After all, the longer you wait to deploy a patch, the longer you are vulnerable to the very bugs that they are designed to fix. Additionally, the longer the patch is available, the longer it is available to hackers. These cybercriminals could take it apart and discover what vulnerability is being addressed, allowing them time to create code that would negate the effects of the designated patch.

So Many Ways for Data Theft
Cisco has found that company email and account attacks are five times more profitable than standard ransomware attacks. In fact, the FBI estimates that BEC attacks have cost organizations over $5 billion. Thus, your business needs to take a stand against common security threats. One way you can strengthen defenses for your infrastructure is with traditional endpoint security. If you can prevent threats from accessing your network to begin with, you’re setting yourself up for success. You can use access controls to ensure that a hacker can’t access your entire infrastructure from a single unsecured endpoint. We also recommend educating your employees via security training so that they are made more aware of their role in network security for your organization.

Don’t let your organization fall victim to security threats in 2018. To learn more about network security, reach out to Macro Systems at 703-359-9211.

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Thursday, August 16, 2018

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