Category: Cyber Attacks Page 1 of 10

A Guide to Website Defacement Prevention

Much like graffiti in the physical world, website defacement attacks can leave a visible mark on your digital property. In carrying out this type of attack, cybercriminals typically replace existing content on your site with their own messages — whether those messages are intended to be political, religious, or simply shocking.

As a small business owner, you know that your website is a critical component of your business. It provides prospective customers with first impressions of your company and may even serve as a digital storefront. A defacement attack that makes visitors turn around and leave could have lasting consequences on your business. 

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How to Protect Your Small Business Against a Cyber Attack

Don’t expect alarms to go off when cybercriminals launch an attack. In fact, it’s just the opposite. What do cybercriminals want? Mostly to remain invisible. That’s why they make every effort to fly under the radar — and why attacks can go unnoticed for months or even years. 

Take a recent cyber attack on Florida healthcare provider AdventHealth. The attack was discovered in February 2019 — a full year after cybercriminals gained access. Attackers used that lengthy window to steal the personal records of 50,000 patients and cover up the evidence of their crime.

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What Is a Web Application Firewall — and Will It Protect My Small Business?

web application firewall — also known as a WAF — is basically a website’s gatekeeper. Once installed, it monitors all incoming traffic to determine whether website visitors are legitimate or malicious. It then denies access to suspicious traffic, blocking out nefarious players.

You may think that your small business’s website doesn’t receive enough traffic to necessitate a gatekeeper, but consider this: More than 60% of all internet traffic is made up of bots. Of course, not all bots are dangerous; some serve a positive purpose, such as search engine crawling. But many pose a significant threat to your website and its visitors. These bad bots visit websites for negative purposes — crawling a site’s code in search of security vulnerabilities, for instance.

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Content Delivery Network Security Best Practices

Despite what your lightning-fast Wi-Fi connection may indicate, the internet is not instantaneous. When someone visits your website, it takes time for content such as text, pictures, and videos to travel from the point of origin to wherever the website’s visitor is located. The further apart the two points are, the longer it takes for the content to be delivered.

Content delivery networks exist to expedite this process. Imagine your business is based in Boston and someone visits your website from San Francisco. If the content had to travel completely across the country, the website load time would be extremely long. CDNs improve this process by storing content on servers located throughout the country in data centers called “points of presence.”

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How to Assemble a Cybersecurity Incident Response Team

A cybersecurity incident response plan is the best way to ensure your business is ready to, well, respond to a successful cyberattack. The most effective plans delegate specific responsibilities to individual team members so that when a hacker strikes, everyone knows his or her next steps. 

When building your response plan, the first question you should ask is: “Who should be on the cybersecurity incident response team?”

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Mitigation Strategies for Cyber Attacks at Your Small Business

If you’re wondering how to protect your small business against a cyber attack, you’re not alone. Almost 60% of cyber attack victims are small businesses, and within two years of the first attack, the likelihood that a small business will experience another is approximately 28%

In response, entrepreneurs everywhere are looking for a mitigation strategy that limits any potential damage while meeting their business needs. Even if you implement preventive security measures, such as keeping your website software up-to-date, perfect cybersecurity is never a guarantee, especially as hackers become more persistent and use more sophisticated methods.

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Types of Cybersecurity Threats Your Incident Response Plan Should Include

Cybersecurity threats aren’t going away anytime soon. In fact, our annual security report illustrates that the number of daily website attack attempts increased by 59% between January 2018 and December 2018. This increase shows that cybercriminals are not only deploying attacks more often, but also using automation technology to do so. 

The good news? These attempts appear to be getting less successful. Of the 6 million individual websites that we analyzed, only 60,000 were actually compromised following an attack attempt, indicating that website security tools are getting better at fending off attacks.

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What is an Incident Response Plan — and Why Does Your Small Business Need One?

Responding to a cyberattack can be confusing, complicated, overwhelming, and often all-consuming. In the wake of an attack, many small businesses don’t know what to do first or how to avoid making the situation worse. Creating a well-thought-out plan in advance, however, can make incident response in cybersecurity both easier and more effective. In fact, every small business should have a cyber incident response plan in place to help mitigate damage in the wake of a cyberattack.

An incident response plan should outline how a business will detect an attack, what needs to happen to limit the consequences, and ultimately how to remove the threat. At each point, the plan should identify who’s responsible for which activity, which tools to use, and how to coordinate both internal and external communications.

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The Financial Impact of Cyber Attacks is Greater Than You Think

Here’s a common scenario: You receive a notification saying your small business website has been hit with a cyberattack. Suddenly, the web host has suspended your site, and you’ve been blacklisted from major search engines because your site poses a risk to visitors. Essentially, your website turns invisible.

Amid the chaos, you need to understand and fix the problem. Many small businesses rely on contracted web developers, who, in turn, rely on someone else for cybersecurity. The security provider needs to get involved immediately because the longer the problem persists, the worse the damage becomes.

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Chatbot Security Risks: What you need to know before starting an online chat

What is a chatbot? Put in simple words, a chatbot is a software solution that uses machine learning to have a conversation (or chat as it is called) with another user online. You’ve likely seen these when you visit a website for a bank, or credit card company, a car sales website, or even a software business.

A few seconds after you land on the page, or sometimes upon arrival, a pop-up will appear that says something like “Hi, how can I help you?” or “Is there something you’re looking for?” If you answer the prompt, your chat with the bot will begin. Based on your responses additional prompts may be provided, or you might be redirected to a live representative for more help.

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