Being on guard can be exhausting in any situation. Learning behaviors that can offset the risk of danger can help, but it isn’t always a failsafe solution. Such is the case with ransomware. You need to know the signs to look for when it comes to dangerous links in phishing emails, attachments that seem like they could be legitimate, or scams that direct you to a fraudulent webpage so that you can avoid potential catastrophe. This can be done via ongoing training programs and keep you constantly learning new approaches and tactics as they change (which is constantly!)
The overwhelming theme of this year’s virtual Microsoft Inspire 2021 conference was that Microsoft is fully committed to being the very best partner they can be to their partners. Satya Nadella started the conference with a powerful keynote acknowledging that Microsoft has gotten where it is today solely because of its partners and that it will only continue to grow if its partners are also growing. Every major takeaway from the conference carried along this theme, yet concepts ranged from security to reduced costs to higher functionality. Below are what we believe to be the most impactful takeaways from Microsoft Inspire 2021.
The three largest network morning news shows are often what Americans have on in the background as we get ready for work or school. You’ll find the headlines, pop culture, and maybe some shopping bargains from time to time. They generally cover the top stories of the day but are not known for their likelihood to consistently address the hard-hitting stories in detail. If cybersecurity is on the docket, it typically is in reference to a retailer being breached or something that would affect the public like the Colonial Pipeline ransomware story – and only because we saw people filling plastic bags full of gasoline as a result of the breach. That part was more newsworthy than the breach itself. You’ll get the general story, but it’s the fallout that is usually more interesting. Rather than a headline of “RANSOMWARE PAID,” you’ll instead see “LONG LINES AT THE STATION AS PEOPLE FILL MILK JUGS WITH GASOLINE!”
Working from home, for many of us, it was fun while it lasted. For others, we couldn't wait to see it end. Now that we are reopening life as we knew it, people are scrambling to get back to the office. Many are eager to escape makeshift dining room desks that compete with family life and chaos or crave the social interaction and other structures that office environments provide. You might be in a combination situation, where you put in hours both at home and in the office. Either way, we are all going back, whether you are ready or not.
Social media allows you to stay connected to people you don’t get to see all of the time, and for that, it is a great thing. Family photos are easily shared, groups of like-minded people can gather together and share thoughts and ideas, and events are marketed to the masses for better visibility. With each of these occurrences, personal information is shared with individuals you have deemed trustworthy and deserving of insight into your life. But what about the people you don’t know and who have insight as well? Friends of friends are strangers who gain access without you even realizing that they can see your child’s school photos. Aside from staying off of social media altogether, how do you mitigate the risk?
Unless you have been living entirely off the grid for the past few years, you are aware of the risks associated with cybersecurity. Although still today, many think, “it won’t happen to me.” Unfortunately, cybercriminals do not discriminate. They do not care what industry your business is or even the size. Cybercriminals know that a breach of a small company can still lead to a payout. With so much uncertainty in our world, the payout from an attack will be worth it to them, whether it is data or ransom. CEOs need to take the “when,” not “if” approach when it comes to cybersecurity awareness and make it a consistent priority. Let’s take a look at three essential steps every CEO should take.
Just as it seemed we might be seeing clear skies ahead in terms of the pandemic; another dark cloud began to rise on the horizon. The Colonial Pipeline breach hit the news, and many people started to panic. We were all too familiar with the uncertainty of the future, and last year’s toilet paper rush was replaced with people filling gasoline in plastic containers of all sorts and sizes.