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Phishing is a term that was adapted from the word “fishing.” When we go fishing, we put a line in the water with bait on it, and we sit back and wait for the fish to come along and take the bait. Maybe the fish was hungry. Perhaps it just wasn’t paying attention. At any rate, eventually a fish will bite, and you’ll have something delicious for dinner.
This is essentially how cyber phishing works: Cyberthieves create an interesting email. It might say that you’ve won a $100 gift certificate from Amazon. Sound too good to be true? Find out! All you have to do is click the link and take a short survey. Easy enough, right?
Once you click the link, guess what happens? A virus is downloaded onto your system. Sometimes it’s malware, and sometimes it’s ransomware. Ransomware encrypts all your files until you pay the ransom. Even then, there’s no guarantee you’ll get your database restored. Malware is all about stealing credentials, passwords, and other valuable information from your company. Sometimes it’s just about destroying your data.
Malware includes Trojans, worms, spyware, adware, and rootkits. These malicious programs each have different goals, but all are destructive and aimed at harming your computers.
As cyber thieves continue to steal from people all over the world, they create new ways to do this. After all, many people have become familiar with some phishing scams so they may not work as well. The solution is to come up with new scams that are enticing—things that users may not have heard about before. The more convincing hackers can make their scams, the more successful they will be.
The entire landscape of cybercrime is changing. It used to be mostly young guys sitting in their parent’s basement, trying to find clever ways to pass the time. Unfortunately, this crime has become so successful that the governments of countries are now involved. A vast majority of ransomware scandals originate in Russia. The government employs hundreds of hackers. They have teams of IT experts who work around the clock to create new and more effective hacking scams.
When hackers are backed by a government like China, they have practically unlimited resources. This makes them even harder to stop. If they were merely individuals committing crimes for personal gain, the authorities could track them down and put them in jail. But today’s cybercriminals are well-organized agencies that are part of a large foreign government, so stopping them is almost impossible.
Below, we discuss some of the most notorious cybercrimes and some new ones that are making the rounds:
You may have spent years trying to build up your company. You have a huge amount of time and money invested, and yet one cyber attack could bring your company to its knees.
The first thing you need is knowledge. Knowledge is still power in our world. You need to know how cyber attacks occur. What are the latest phishing scams? How does ransomware work?
You also need to train your employees so they’ll know as well. Just one careless employee can open the door to thieves and cost you thousands of dollars. It’s cheaper to train your employees. Make sure your employees get regular training to remind them how to recognize a phishing email or malicious website.
Unfortunately, cybercrimes won’t stop anytime soon. They’ve been too successful, and there’s almost no chance of getting caught. What you have to do is protect yourself and your data with the best security software.
If you’re not sure whether your cybersecurity program is strong enough, hire a managed IT provider. They can perform penetration testing to assess your level of security.
A great managed IT service provider will do a full assessment of all your security protocols and let you know whether you need to add layers of protection. When you have the best cybersecurity platform in place, you can sleep better at night.
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