Cybersecurity Updates June

June 2022

Cyber Security Update

Cyber Security Update June

SoftwareONE believes there is a need for additional information when it comes to cybersecurity, as organizations have made it clear that investment in a proper security strategy is paramount. SoftwareONE’s monthly Cyber Security Update provides information on the most recent threats, the latest breaches and how to react to them in order to stay on top of malware and ransomware threats.

Latest Security Breaches

Shields Health Care Group Inc. warned that ‘an unknown actor’ had access to some of its systems for two weeks during March. As many as two million people may have had records compromised, including names, addresses, social security numbers and medical information.

In a reminder that old-school attacks still have data implications, TridentCare has warned that a burglary at one of its offices resulted in the loss of several hard drives containing patient records. It believes data was corrupted and therefore difficult to access but still recommended that patients monitor accounts and credit reports closely.

One of the largest banks in the US, Michigan-based Flagstar, has warned that as many as 1.5 million customers may have had data exposed as a result of a breach in December last year. It has yet to see the data misused or offered for sale.

Indian farmers using a government website offering a support to the agricultural sector may have had Aadhaar numbers exposed – the Indian equivalent of National Insurance numbers. Although not secret, the numbers can be used for a variety of account fraud activities.

Cybersecurity Awareness

A useful reminder that cyberattacks are rarely just a one-off event. Research from Cymulate reports that two-thirds of companies that suffer an attack, are attacked again within 12 months. Some 22% of firms had to inform regulators and 10% had to pay fines.

Microsoft Philanthropies used an event launching a training initiative in India to predict there will be 3.5 million empty cybersecurity posts around the world by 2025. The initiative hopes to train students typically overlooked by existing colleges and universities.

Gartner has released its security predictions for the next three years. It expects 80% of businesses to adopt a unified cloud, network and private application access strategy, partly as a result of pandemic accelerated changes to how we work. Gartner also predicts that a third of nation states will have laws in place restricting ransomware payments by 2025.

Cybersecurity Intelligence

The FBI is warning that attackers are using a combination of stolen credentials and deep fake technology to make applications for remote working posts which could give them access to sensitive systems. The attackers then use deep fake technology to create convincing video interviews for the positions.

The Log4Shell vulnerability first made public in December 2021 is still causing damage. A joint warning by two US security agencies warns that cyber threat actors, including state-sponsored advanced persistent threat actors, are still using Log4Shell on unpatched servers to gain initial access to organizations that have not fixed their systems.

Ransomware groups are exploiting a Mitel VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) application in order to access systems and plant malware. Once the code is in place, attackers are able to remove all files from the VoIP system in an effort to cover their tracks.

Hot Topic of the Month: Fixing Bad Habits

Six bad security habits and how to break them

A useful reminder from Shrav Mehta, CEO, Secureframe, about six bad habits we all need to break to keep our organizations safe and secure. So much in security is about simply getting the basics right.

1. Poor Password Hygiene

We all know the problem and we’re all guilty to some extent of reusing passwords, or versions of them, or of not changing them often enough.

Break it: If you’re not already – use a password manager and watch the problem go away. Create a company-wide password policy but make sure it is useable and realistic.

2. Convoluted Processes and Policies

The trouble with documents like onboarding checklists and privacy policies is that they grow over time. No-one ever edits them down or checks how much is still relevant and necessary. Make security a pain to use and people will simply find ways around it.

Break it: Set a calendar reminder to review and edit. Get feedback from users and act on it.

3. Outdated Software and Non-secure Devices

The pandemic has accelerated the shift to home working and with it an extension of the network and a plethora of potentially unsecure devices attaching to it. Home networks do not have to be less secure – but they tend to be by default.

Break it: Set rules for staff that are workable but safe. Remind them that software updates remain important and make sure they using a secure VPN to access sensitive data.

4. Lack of an Internal Audit Program

Policies and rules are one thing but actually knowing what’s on your network is another. You need as much visibility as possible into what is really going on.

Break it: Stay up to date with evolving threats but at least once a year take a deeper look at your organization and its security posture.

5. Untrained Staff

Phishing remains the key way in for most attackers. And the bad guys are getting better and better at creating very convincing fake emails. Staff need training the minute they join and start using company systems, not three weeks later.

Break it: Staff need effective, not ‘box ticking’, training. But they also need an atmosphere where they’re not afraid to put their hand up if they see something suspicious or think they may have made a mistake.

6. Complacency

Despite the headlines, too many organizations still believe that a breach or security incident won’t happen to them. You need everyone, from the board downwards, to understand that the threat is real.

Break it: You need to build a culture that prioritizes security and understands its importance. Ensure all employees understand their roles and responsibilities regarding keeping customer and business information safe, and clearly communicate the benefits of following established policies and procedures.

Identify and Rectify Your IT Security Weaknesses Before Hackers Do

Data theft is usually financially driven. There are many ways for cybercriminals to get their hands on your personal data, including malware, phishing, password cracking and man-in-the-middle attacks. Start mitigating the risks you face with professional Penetration Testing.

By Cyber Smart
  • Cybersecurity User Awareness, Cyber Threat Bulletin, Cybersecurity
  • Cyber Security, Information Security

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Bala Sathunathan

Bala Sethunathan

Director, Security Practice & CISO


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