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Top Targets for Cybercriminals: How to Protect Your Business

The last decade has seen a significant increase in the sophistication and frequency of cybercrime. Businesses of all sizes have become targets, with malicious actors using ever-more sophisticated techniques to exploit vulnerabilities and steal data. The cost of these attacks can be high regarding the financial loss caused by the theft of data or intellectual property and the reputation damage resulting from a breach.

In response to this threat, businesses have had to invest increasingly in cybersecurity in terms of technology and training staff to spot and deal with potential threats. One way to do this is using a SIEM (Security Information and Event Management) system. SIEM can help businesses detect and respond to malicious activity quickly and effectively.

The Top 6 Industries Targeted by Cyber Criminals

When it comes to cybercrime, certain target industries are more attractive to criminals than others. This is because these groups tend to have more valuable data or be more vulnerable to attack. Here are some of the top targets for cybercriminals:

1. Business

Cybercriminals often target businesses because they have valuable data that can be sold or used to extort money. These data include customer data, financial data, and trade secrets. Businesses also tend to be more vulnerable to attack because they usually have less robust security than individuals.

2. Healthcare/Medical

The healthcare industry is a prime target for cybercriminals. Healthcare organizations are especially vulnerable to attacks because they maintain large amounts of sensitive patient data. In addition, many healthcare organizations use outdated or legacy systems that can be easier for attackers to exploit.

Attackers often target healthcare organizations to steal patient data, which they sell on the black market. In some cases, attackers may also demand a ransom from the organization for not publicly releasing the stolen data.

3. Financial

The financial services industry is a major target for cybercriminals due to the large amounts of money involved in this sector. In addition, the sensitive nature of data that financial institutions store makes them attractive to hackers. On January 17, 2022, hackers exploited a bug in the blockchain service to steal around $1.4 million from Multichain, a platform that permits users to exchange tokens between blockchains.

4. Government

Government agencies are another common target for cybercriminals. Government is a prime target because they often have sensitive information that could be used for political gain or to embarrass the agency. Government agencies also tend to have weaker security than businesses, making them an easier target.

The United States government was hit particularly hard by cyber attacks in 2015. The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) lost the personal information of over 21 million current and former government employees. 

5. Education

The education industry is a prime target for cybercriminals. In the past year, several high-profile attacks on schools and universities have resulted in the theft of sensitive data and disrupted operations. One of the most recent and notable examples is the attack on the University of California, Berkeley, which resulted in the theft of over 800,000 student and staff records. This attack highlights the vulnerabilities of the education sector to cybercrime.

6. Energy/Utilities

Cybercriminals understand the critical importance of energy and utilities to our way of life. They also know that these industries are often behind the curve regarding cybersecurity. As a result, energy and utility companies are prime targets for cyber attacks. Cybercriminals target the energy sector because it is critical to national infrastructure.

Top Types of Cyber Attacks

There are many types of cyber attacks, but some are more common than others. Here are the top five types of cyber attacks:

1. Phishing

Phishing is a social engineering attack where an attacker tries to trick users into giving them sensitive information, such as passwords or financial information. They may do this by sending an email that looks like it’s from a legitimate company or by setting up a fake website that looks like a legitimate website.

2. DoS and DDoS Attacks

A DoS attack is when an attacker attempts to make a system or network unavailable by flooding it with traffic or requests. It can cause the system to crash or become overloaded and unusable. DoS attacks can make it even harder for the system to recover from the attack. 

On the other hand, DDoS attacks are types of cyber attacks that overload the system with the requests, making them unavailable to legitimate users. DDoS attackers use botnets, networks of infected computers that can be controlled remotely, to send large amounts of traffic to their target. This can overwhelm the target’s servers, preventing them from being able to respond to legitimate requests.

3. Ransomware

Ransomware is malware that encrypts a victim’s files and demands a ransom payment to decrypt them. It can be a very costly attack for businesses, resulting in losing important data. Ransomware is typically spread through infected websites. Once your system is infected, the ransomware will start encrypting your files and demand a ransom for the decryption key.

4. SQL Injection Attacks

SQL injection is a type of attack where an attacker inserts malicious code into a database query that is then executed by the server. SQL injection can allow the attacker to access sensitive data or even take control of the server. SQL injection attacks take advantage of vulnerabilities in web applications that allow attackers to execute malicious SQL commands. Cybercriminals use these commands to access sensitive data, modify data, or even delete data.

5. MITM Attacks

Man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks are another type of common cyber-attack. As the name applies, an attacker can intercept communication between two parties in a MITM attack. There are a few different ways cybercriminals carry out a MITM attack, but one of the most common is using ARP poisoning.

ARP is where the attacker sends false ARP (Address Resolution Protocol) messages to a network, which causes devices on the network to believe that the attacker’s machine is the machine they want to communicate with.

SIEM: The Top Tool for Cybercrime Prevention

SIEM is security software that collects, analyzes, and monitors data from your IT infrastructure to give you visibility into potential cyber threats. SIEM can help you detect and respond to attacks in real-time and track down the source of an attack so you can prevent it

How SIEM Can Help Prevent Cyber Attacks

There are a few key ways that SIEM can help prevent cyber attacks: 

24/7 monitoring and alerts: SIEM tools can monitor your IT infrastructure for signs of an attack around the clock. If something suspicious is detected, you’ll be immediately alerted so you can investigate and take action to stop the attack.

  • Improved visibility: One of the biggest challenges in cybersecurity is getting visibility into all the data and activity across your IT environment. SIEM can help by collecting data from multiple sources and giving you a centralized view so you can identify potential threats more easily.

Get a Top-Notch Security Service Today!

Cyber Sainik offers a wide range of security services that can help protect your business from cyber threats. We provide monitoring and management, virtual Ciso services, laptop security, and vulnerability protection. To discover how we can help you defend your organization from cyber assaults, contact us today for a consultation.