Cybersecurity is a growing concern in today’s tech world. Governments, individuals, and enterprises, big or small, are all concerned about online safety. A business or an industry’s ability to protect its sensitive data and customer information determines how successful it becomes.
There’re various innovative ways that industries and organizations are using to maintain security. But then, the cybersecurity risks don’t seem to reduce. What’s scarier are the financial and reputational losses that these threats can cause to an organization.
According to reports, more than 80% of American businesses have gotten hacked into successfully. There’re various cybersecurity challenges that these businesses, despite trying their best to secure their systems. This article looks into these challenges and how they affect cybersecurity in large-scale industries.
Let’s dive into it.
1. Lack of IT Talent
Every organization needs a team of IT experts to help it secure its systems. With cybercrimes like malware becoming popular, you need skilled personnel to back up software security tools. However, many industries lack expertise in cybersecurity issues and constantly get hit by attackers.
The best thing that a business owner can do is undertake staff training on cybersecurity. Drill and train on the identification of threats and response plans. Cybersecurity is an enabler of daily business operations, and the better you’re prepared for threats, the more successful you become.
2. Dependence on other parties
The business ecosystem today has made it easy for organizations to operate. However, it also has led to the exposure of business systems and networks, making it risky. The soaring popularity of the internet and many other technology trends are both a curse and a blessing for various industries.
One reason why this is a challenge for businesses is that it exposes their networks. The more technology a company uses, the more security loopholes it creates on its network. That has pushed enterprises to depend not only on their in-house IT teams but also on hiring external teams.
3. Expanded Attack Opportunities for Hackers
Hackers and attackers now have more than one way of infiltrating systems. There’re lots of security loopholes that they can exploit and access sensitive business and customer data. The physical and virtual worlds also overlap another aspect that is putting businesses at higher risks.
As mentioned earlier, technology is becoming mainstream today. But then, it is becoming the most significant threat for businesses in today’s online environment. Besides, many of the tech devices used in industries today are becoming interconnected. Soon, a breach in one device will affect entire business systems.
4. Cyber Espionage
The cloud has become vital for small and large businesses. It offers secure and ample storage of sensitive business files and data. Most companies do not remember to secure the cloud. Besides, it can be too expensive for some businesses that have meager resources.
The cloud exposes businesses to unique risks that they’re not ready to counter. The challenge is on setting up cloud security and monitoring activity on it to identify security threats. Besides, lack of expertise and inadequate resources for investment in this area has been the biggest challenge.
5. Difficulty Tracking Cybercriminals
Cybercriminals are among the people that face the least number of risks in their work. Besides, most of their hacking attempts succeed with no trails left to track them. According to research, only 0.05% of cybercriminals get prosecuted in the US. That shows how rare it is to track and arrest a cybercriminal if they hacked your system.
Large industries do not have systems in place to track cybercriminals. The tactics used by cybercriminals change every day. Besides, it can be challenging to attach a hacking attempt to an individual without enough evidence. Cybercriminals rarely use real or identifiable profiles when hacking systems.
Email attacks have become common today, and big organizations are at risk. Even with top security systems in place, large industries still lose data through phishing attacks. That is because these types of attacks can result from human error and poor employee education.
Many businesses are finding it hard to stop phishing attempts, especially if they have many employees. It becomes difficult sometimes to understand who clicked on a malicious link and when. By the time businesses realize they’re losing their data, it could have already ended in the wrong hands.
7. Data Theft
Small and mid-sized businesses have been the biggest targets for hackers. That is because they have weaker security systems and limited resources to secure their networks. However, tables have turned, and large organizations and industries are just as vulnerable as small and midsized businesses.
Data theft happens in several ways, and businesses cannot have enough systems to stop it completely. You could click on a malicious link on an email or mishandle your password and expose your network to an attack. Large industries find it challenging to control such things as they hold vast volumes of data.
Besides, they have many employees and have many computers. The growing popularity of IoT devices has also made businesses deploy more of such devices. All these increase the chances of companies losing their most sensitive data by exposing their networks.
8. Changing Attacker Tactics
As mentioned earlier, attackers are getting smarter every day. The techniques used to attack an organization yesterday may have already gotten replaced by new ones. Businesses have to be smart, study the attacker’s moves, and develop effective response plans to attacks.
The challenge has been on how businesses respond to attacks. Updating systems and changing strategies to beat attackers is a big challenge. It is almost impossible for companies to develop responses as quickly as attackers change their tactics. That leaves a massive gap in the security systems.
9. Complicated Regulation
Regulations are another factor that’s making cybersecurity complex for businesses. Many political discussions are going on regarding consumer privacy and NERC CIP compliance by companies. These regulations got developed to smoothen the working environment, which does not serve their intended purpose.
Instead, it is becoming difficult for businesses to operate as regulations increase the existing hurdles. The hurdles set hold businesses to higher security standards than they can manage. Companies with meager resources find it difficult to cope with these regulations.
There needs to be a balance in regulation. Businesses and consumers need protection, but it shouldn’t sabotage the cybersecurity efforts of companies.
10. Unprecedented Attacks
Businesses need equipment to operate online nowadays. A couple of years ago, an entire organization could work efficiently with a single computer. The amount of data handled, the number of employees and the number of offices have all increased today.
The fact that businesses operate from multiple computers has made things riskier. Even though businesses secure their networks, an employee error on one of the computers can compromise the entire system. That is especially when the computers are interconnected, or employees log in to accounts.
11. Distributed Denial of Service (DDOS)
DDOS attacks have crippled many big brands in various industries. As mentioned earlier, attackers are changing their techniques and making it easier to compromise systems. DDOS attacks overload a website and make it difficult to access, leading to financial and customer loss.
Attackers who use DDOS aren’t easy to identify and prevent. That is because they send traffic that looks real and from a natural source. Large industries haven’t come up with a way to avoid these attacks and are losing a lot of data every day.
13. Insider Threats
Most cybersecurity threats are from external sources. But then large organizations also have internal threats to deal with today. An insider threat can be complex for any business to detect and may go unnoticed for months or years. Your competitors can work with a malicious employee to access your sensitive data.
It isn’t easy to know an employee’s intent during the hiring process. Thus, you may end up including people with malicious intent in your team and expose your network. Large industries can do the best thing to monitor and verify inbound and outbound traffic on their website, especially from employees.
The Internet of Things (IoT)
According to research, there will be over 11.6 Billion interconnected devices by 2021. IoT devices are already changing the business environment in industries that have adopted them. But then, it isn’t all rosy with these devices even though they’re enabling business significantly.IoT devices increase security holes in organizations and industries.The more connected to the internet devices are, the higher the chances of getting hacked into by malicious people. A hack could lead to significant data losses and compromise the business. The fact that IoT devices are interconnected also puts an entire network at risk.
The new age of cybersecurity threats doesn’t spare small or large enterprises. Entire industries have also lost sensitive data to cybercriminals who use different tactics.As these criminals up their game, business owners also have to find modern solutions to counter attacks. Understanding the challenges mentioned above will help business owners to come up with working solutions.