If you think your company can recover from a breach of security, think again.
As of last year, the average cost of a data breach reached a staggering $3.86 million per incident, up 6.4% on the previous year. Read more in our prior blog post about the cost of valid misused credential.
So what is a data breach, exactly? It’s more important than ever that you are able to confidently identify one and know how to prevent them. Put simply, a data breach is a security incident wherein yours or your company’s sensitive information is accessed without authorization.
These beaches take many forms. Knowing the most common data breaches is essential for protecting your business, your customers, and your bottom line. Here’s all you need to know about how to prevent data breaches.
What Is a Data Breach?
A data breach is more than just a leak or an exposure of sensitive data. It most often comes in the form of a targeted attack, with the attacker often seeking a specific data set which could offer financial benefits for them.
Usually, this is confidential financial information, such as account numbers, transactions histories, and various types of passwords.
Personal data is often sought after by identity frauds, whilst medical records fetch large sums on the black market. Hopefully, this illustrates why preventing data breaches is of the utmost importance.
Ransomware Data Breaches
This is by far the most common type of breach of security. This is when an attacker will upload malicious software to your system that encrypts your files and data.
This means that the data will remain inaccessible to you, allowing the attacker to demand a ransom in exchange for your files. The most effective weapon against these attacks is backup data.
If you can upload your stolen data via a backup source, then the attacker’s efforts will have been for nothing. You can also use a decryption service to simply decrypt the data you’ve lost, although this is never guaranteed to work.
Attacking via Vulnerable Software
If you want to know how to prevent data breaches with zero effort, then just update your systems. Outdated OS systems and applications are a prime target for attackers.
Updates fix security issues and add new features to defend against the latest hacker techniques. Outdated software retains all these vulnerabilities, which attacker love.
If your software has been exploited, immediately use a security patch to isolate the threat. You can also write a firewall to ringfence the vulnerability and keep the rest of your system safe.
Internal Data Breaches
Unfortunately, a huge number of data breaches come from within a company. This might mean that employees are attempting to steal data, or that an attacker is using your office hardware to get inside the system.
You should be proactive about this by ensuring all your employees have limited privileges and that they can’t access anywhere they shouldn’t be.
You should also install intrusion detection systems to alert you whenever an insider breach is about to occur.
Now we’ve answered the question, “what is a data breach?“. However, knowing is only half the battle. It is vital that you’re aware of evolving cybersecurity threats and are prepared to deal with them.
If you’re ready to boost your defenses, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our experts today.