If you have read the news lately and have understood all the turbulence surrounding the malicious attacks of Google, Yahoo and Adobe, you may be worried about the security of your own business. You may have thought that your network was invincible, so this news could make you fragile. You have good reason to feel this – according to an article in Sydney Morning Herald the number of hackers who handle private financial information belonging to Australian companies is increasing. Obviously, using the Internet and the intranet for business purposes has become a viable solution for achieving business goals, but the criminal faction sees just as many opportunities.
Australia is a frequent target of cybercrime
Symantec, a data security firm, said that Australian and New Zealand companies face 75 percent more security breaches than the global average, with 89 percent of companies polled in the past 12 months admitting at least one intrusion. Hackers do not necessarily attack big companies where they can make big money. Like any thief, they go where the risk is low and they can enter and leave the system quickly and undetected. The fact is that it is not necessary to be at a particular level of profitability of the business to be targeted. Small businesses tend to use less complete IT security, which makes them more vulnerable. In general, hackers are interested in easy money.
Google and other large companies are not exempt
The threat does not always concern banking information or sensitive intellectual property. As Google discovered in December 2009, cyber attacks are at stake in areas such as human rights. The advertising and research giant was appalled by the fact that a highly organized effort dubbed "Aurora" had been undertaken to hack the Gmail accounts of Chinese human rights activists. They managed to infiltrate only two accounts and could not see the actual correspondence of the account holders. The action put Google in the position where he found it necessary to warn the Chinese human rights community of the attack and to prepare to withdraw its trade relations with China . Google officials have not directly accused the Chinese government of being the perpetrators, but they have decided to review their trade relations with the country by relying on its attempts to limit the freedom of business. Expression on the Internet. Google has declared its concern for the safety of Chinese citizens and the risk of questioning and imprisoning these citizens.
The attack targeted at least 20 other large companies in the Internet, media, finance and technology industry: Yahoo, Adobe, Symantec, Dow Chemical and Northrop Grumman, to name a few. only a few. This was accomplished through a technique called "spear phishing". This looks like an attack against 100 IT companies in July 2009 where company employees had been targeted by infected attachments.
The defense of small and medium-sized enterprises is minimal
Most companies are totally helpless against these sophisticated attacks. They use instant messages and emails that seem innocent at first because the senders seem to be trusted friends and colleagues. The messages are adjusted to escape the antivirus programs designed for these applications. Clearly, IT security best practices that have successfully contained attackers for many years are no longer sufficient. An innovative caliber of attacks is circulating around the world with the help of custom malware specifically designed for individual businesses. Hackers do not seem to care if it takes longer to get around the antivirus software used by big business. They continue to tweak their malware until they are effective. Small businesses that do not have the budget for large scale security have no chance. Hackers have the option of requisitioning the laptop of a single employee and making it a gateway for full administrative access to the entire company network.
The security firm, ISec Partners who investigated the attack on Google and the companies that resulted in it recommend that we make fundamental changes to the way we protect our networks. They say that we are simply not prepared for the level of sophistication demonstrated by new cybercriminals.
Stories of hackers in the Australian News
Internet news sites report the direct effects of cyber-hacking on Australia. Today online posted an article about a hacker called "Ghostbuster" that targeted businesses in Melbourne in response to violence against Indians. The person behind the attacks sent threatening emails saying that Australian servers would be hacked until racism against Indian nationals was eliminated. The action occurred as a result of the murder of a 21-year-old Punjabi student in January 2010. Several companies in Melbourne have been victims of crime when all of their networks was plunged into chaos.
In the technology section of L & # 39; age is a report describing the effects on government websites of hackers associated with the "Anonymous" group, known for its attacks on Scientology. This is the same group that has temporarily ransacked pornography on Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's website. On the morning of February 10, 2010, a number of government sites were down. The attack was contrary to the government's plans of censorship of the internet. Communications Minister Stephen Conroy was not satisfied that Australian citizens could not get the necessary services online and felt it was irresponsible on the part of the pirates.
in the Sydney Morning Herald A reporter mentions statistics that there are now more mobile devices in the country than Australians. It is not unusual for an individual to have two or three. The increasing use of wireless broadband offers accessibility and convenience to subscribers, but also extends the territory of cybercriminals. At present, the cyber-hacking of wireless devices has more obstacles than terrestrial networks, such as the cost of a phone call. However, with the advancement of mobile device technology to the point of replacing the need to own a laptop, the potential for targeting by hackers exists. Real devices may be secure, but the Wi-Fi network, often free and faster for users of public places, is a temptation for cybercriminals. You may think that you have connected to a site operated by an airport, a hotel or a café, but there is no way of knowing for sure who controls the IP address that now has access to everything on your computer or mobile device. It is not so difficult for hackers to present a fake website on which you can trust that they can use to steal your network at any time in the future.
Millions of dollars are stolen every day from individuals and businesses using the Internet. We are frequently warned about viruses, worms and phishing, but we get caught anyway. The situation is worsening as hackers better control unique systems designed to prevent them from entering. If you continue to feel embarrassed by the vulnerability of your network, it will be useful to take charge of your instinct.