Risks that Come From IT Threats

Concept Art: Smartphone infected with virus

In the business world, it’s natural that you encounter those who want to see you fail, but there are also those who simply want to piggyback off your success. In many ways, security threats are a little bit of both, as they can potentially steal your data and leverage it to their benefit, as well as cause harm to your organization. We’ll dig into some of the details of the most common security threats and the risks they cause for your business.

Before we get too deep, we want to emphasize that there are two primary categories for threats to your business: external and internal.

External

External threats are those that come from outside your business’ network. The majority of threats will fall into this particular category, and it contains a lot of big names that you have likely heard in the past. Here are a couple of examples of threats to your business, as well as what they can lead to:

  • Viruses/Malware: these are malicious bits of code or full-blown software programs that can be customized by hackers to perform a certain role. It would take far too long to list off everything that can be done with these kinds of threats, as the options are literally limitless.
  • Ransomware: Sometimes malware will encrypt the user’s files and demand payment for the decryption key. Without access to important files, businesses might crumble under the pressure, losing both money due to the payment and a little bit of dignity in the process. In cases like this, it’s important to never pay the ransom, as it only serves to fund further attacks.
  • Spam: Hackers like to send countless emails with threats attached to them, hoping that someone will download them and expose their organization’s network to threats. Spam can be prevented for the most part, but if left unchecked, your business could wind up installing threats on your network by accident.

Internal

Internal threats can come from the most unlikely sources, as even the most well-meaning employees could accidentally expose your business to potential threats. Furthermore, there could even be more sinister forces at work with employees potentially trying to actively sabotage operations. Here are some ideas for threats and what could happen from them:

  • Phishing Attacks: Your users are your weakest link. While you might think that you have an understanding of adequate security practices, they may not, leading hackers to utilize underhanded tactics to leverage this to their advantage. Phishing attacks convince users to click links, download attachments, or provide credentials/sensitive information.
  • Account Hijacking: Let’s say an employee’s account is hijacked by an external threat. You might see account activity from your employee, but how do you know that it’s not someone else using their account? Data could be stolen, or worse.
  • Access Control: Have you ever fired an employee? Have they ever resented you for it? Chances are they may have felt the urge to go into their old accounts and cause some trouble. These internal threats could lead to embarrassing situations, as well as a loss of control over certain types of data. It’s up to you to cut off access as soon as you can.

Does your business need help maintaining security and keeping track of the countless threats out there? ExcalTech can equip you with the best security measures on the market. To learn more, reach out to us at (877) 638-5464.

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