The cybersecurity threats facing companies across the UK is constantly evolving and the demand for businesses of all sizes to continuously review and update their cyber security policies and practices is more vital than ever.
According to figures released in 2018, nearly half of businesses in the UK have fallen victim to cyberattacks or security breaches in the last year - costing them each thousands in revenue.
From malware injection and phishing to hacking and ransomware, cyber-attacks can take many forms: Some types of attacks are more effective than others, but all present a significant - and increasingly unavoidable - business risk.
For IT managers and chief information security officer’s alike, the concerns attributed to cyber security are widespread. From understanding who is attacking their organisation and why, to educating staff and key stakeholders, understanding the challenges arising from cyber security has never been more important.
Check out our latest video with chief analyst, Darren Sanders, who outlines the issues facing companies in today's landscape.
5 key cyber security challenges facing CISOs and IT Managers
Typically, the 5 key challenges facing IT professions concerning cyber security include:
Executive-level threat intelligence – security officers want to know who is attacking their organisations, for what reason, and obtain a high-level view of the tactics, techniques and procedures being used.
Integrated security platforms – the need to consolidate and integrate security technologies to gain full threat visibility across all platforms with the goal to gain true visibility into cloud, mobile, and on-premises assets—and be able to quickly see and correlate risk and incidents.
Business Risk - CISOs are getting more involved with business planning and strategy so they can assess risks, implement controls, and manage risk over time. Lack of planning and preparation for a cyber security incident with adhoc or inconsistent cyber security response plans is a key concern.
Cost Implications - It is not purely the direct costs of a breach to be considered – the fine from the IC Combined with GDPR implications the associated costs of a breach are considered the most important consequence.
The importance of people – Many organisations continue to rely on manual processes for cybersecurity, and 70% of organisations claim they’ve been impacted by the cybersecurity skills shortage. Since the cybersecurity landscape is constantly changing, in addition to attracting new talent to the industry, continuous training and skills development for existing teams is essential with an aim to create solid basic cyber hygiene and nurture a culture of security.
The different types of cyber-attacks facing UK businesses
With these challenges well-documented, the different types of cyber-attacks impacting organisations has never been greater.
Malware is a term to often describe malicious software, including viruses and most commonly, ransomware. Malware attacks a network through a vulnerability or error, for example when a user clicks a dangerous link or install malicious software. Once inside the network, malware can:
- Blocks access to key components.
- Install additional harmful software
- Covertly obtains information by transmitting data from the hard drive (spyware)
- Disrupts systems making them system unsuable
Phishing is the practice of sending fraudulent communications – email/instant messenger for example – that appear to come from a trusted source. The aim is to steal sensitive data or to install malware on the victim’s machine.
Man-in-the-middle (MitM) attacks occur when attackers insert themselves into a two-party transaction. This allows attackers to steal and filter data:
Two common entry points for MitM attacks include:
- On unsecure public Wi-Fi, attackers can insert themselves between a visitor’s device and the network.
- An attacker can install malicious software to a user’s device once they have entered the system.
A denial-of-service attack floods systems, servers, or networks with traffic to exhaust resources and bandwidth. As a result, the system is unable to fulfil legitimate requests. Attackers can also use multiple compromised devices to launch this attack. This is known as a distributed-denial-of-service (DDoS) attack.
Looking to learn more about the current landscape of cyber security threats?
Download our latest eBook and discover more about the cyber security challenges facing CISOs and IT managers.