Millions of users worldwide are put in danger (well, every 30 seconds, to be exact). Put succinctly, cyber thieves and their tactics are evolving as much as our security measures.
But it’s not simply typical phishing scams that are wreaking havoc on various organisations; spear phishing and CEO fraud now provide a much more destructive scope of an attack. Without a doubt, IT executives are trembling at the prospect of becoming yet another chapter in the never-ending book of breaches.
What exactly is phishing?
Humans are the weakest link in the security chain. Attackers use various methods to convince and deceive workers into acquiring vital access, but one approach stands out in its scope: email.
Phishing is the effort to gain personal information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card data (and, indirectly, money), typically for malevolent motives such as executing and distributing harmful material through electronic communication while masquerading as a trustworthy institution.
1. Cybercrime Groups are Still Loaded
Because of the enormous success that cyber thieves have enjoyed in recent years, they have plenty of money to invest in scams. As a result, they may spend technological resources to improve the efficiency of their scams, whether that is in the number of scams they can send, the validity of their fake communications, or the intricacy of their operations.
It has also allowed cybercriminals to diversify into new attack routes. In recent years, for example, there has been substantial growth in social media. This is especially problematic because most phishing advice focuses on email-based frauds – or, on rare occasions, phone scams (‘vishing’). As a result, people are less likely to detect the tactics used by social media scammers.
2. Businesses aren’t Doing Enough
Companies just aren’t doing enough to mitigate the dangers posed by phishing and harmful malware. There are insufficient backup mechanisms in place and an inability to identify the weakest users who require more training.
Furthermore, robust internal control mechanisms, such as double confirmation for each bank transfer request, are frequently lacking (which can be vital to preventing CEO fraud). By ignoring these procedures, you are putting yourself at risk of falling victim to some of the most frequent fraudulent methods.
3. Lower Costs of Phishing and Ransomware Tools
The availability of phishing kits, as well as the emergence of ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS), has made it simple for inexperienced hackers to enter the market and compete with sophisticated criminal organisations. The most concerning aspect of this rising trend is that folks with little or no IT knowledge are reaping the benefits of these simple-to-obtain technologies. With such high earning potential, it’s easy to see why criminals are lured into the profitable business.
Rethink Your Anti-Phishing Protocols
There are several recommended practices that companies should adhere to reduce their vulnerability to phishing and ransomware.
Organisations should establish a robust security awareness program to assist people in making better judgments about the information they get via email, what they see or click on social media, how they use the internet, etc. Employee training must be adequately funded so that the “human firewall” can offer an appropriate first line of defense against increasingly complex phishing and ransomware.
Furthermore, businesses should evaluate their staff regularly to see if their security awareness training is successful. These tests should initiate a plan of action and track the organisation’s achievements and failures. Concerning corporate email compromise, businesses should set up communication “backchannels” for executives and other critical personnel who this attack scheme may target.
Creating a coherent approach that covers people, processes, and technology is the key to avoiding these assaults, increasing employee phishing awareness, or minimizing their magnitude.