According to the data released by the Global State of Information Security survey in January 2017, reported computer breaches were more than 1000 events. These breaches affected institutions and industries in health, education, finance, military, and businesses. Due to the breaches by hackers, the exposure involved hundreds of millions of personal records.
The rate at which systems are hacked has been on the increase in the last several years. Hackers employ multiple strategies to identify loopholes present in a system. Their goal is to access sensitive information about their victims, thereby exposing the public to unseen threats. The root cause responsible for the infiltration of cyber-attacks depends on numerous factors. Some of these are
- the utilization of a weak password by users
- failure to update the software on the systems
- the use of substandard software
- poorly coded software
- employee sabotage
All these elements and more can make a system vulnerable to attacks. Hackers search and explore these vulnerabilities. This trend is limited to big organizations; both small and mid-size businesses in all sectors of the economy are equally affected.
Organizations must regularly review their security policies to identify and correct loopholes in either the formulation or implementation. Every system in an organization integrates with other systems to work in unison to achieve the overall business goals.
1. Account System
This system contains information about the financial state of a business. Information regarding the general ledger, trial balance, account payable and receivable, checks, and balances are all contained in this system.
The importance of this system to an organization cannot be underestimated. Hackers will want to view the data and deny authorized users from accessing it by installing Ransomware. This malware works by denying legitimate users access to the system until the hacker receives a ransom.
The most effective way to prevent a Ransomware attack is by installing a Ransomware blocker on the systems and servers.
2. Payroll System
The payroll system is a hacker target. It contains information about the salary, wages, and tax status of all employees. This system also contains information regarding the taxes deducted from each employee and paid to the government. The hacking of this system will allow the viewer the data and the ability to manipulate the information or sell it on the dark web.
3. Inventory System
A strategic inventory point of sale system is the lifeblood of a company. The information contained is usually proprietary and privileges. It is the storage f contact details regarding every supplier, vendor, and the raw materials needed for production and manufacturing.
4. Active Directory System
The active directory system contains login details of every computer user in an organization. The information is stored in the user name, access authorization, password dates, and current password expirations. The hacking of this system would allow a hacker to either add himself as an authorized user or alter users’ information.
5. Sales System
Every business has its sales methods and secrets. Their branding is the key to success, and sharing it with their competitors will disadvantage the company. This might be in the form of training manuals, journals, strategies, policies, and procedures. The sales system, in most cases, will also contain the names of the business’ top dealers.
6. Marketing System
Every successful business owner knows the importance of marketing apart from having a quality product and service. The marketing system might likely contain information regarding the marketing strategy. This includes digital, Facebook, Linked In, Instagram advertisements, budgets, and print sourcing. They would not want this information disclosed, especially to someone who is not part of their team.
7. Production System
The production system contains confidential company manufacturing protocols. This includes the procedures used in producing their products and services. Hacking into such a system will allow an intruder to profit by selling the information to rivals.
The rise in the number of computer breaches is cause for alarm for all stakeholders. In a cyber-attack, the hacker targets seven systems due to the sensitive information and ease of access.
Organizations must proactively complete rigorous security checks. In addition, more is achievable in education, enforcement of policies, hiring practices, systems testing, and cybersecurity that can mitigate or prevent damage.