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There’s no denying that cybercrime is on the rise. All it takes is a glance at a few big news stories from the past couple years. Equifax gave up the information of over 100 million people, many of them not even users, to a surgical hacker attack. Last May, over 57,000 infections spread from a single ransomware source across 99 separate countries, with damage reaching everything from hospitals and businesses to vital public utilities like the German railway network. And how many high-profile celebrities have had their phone’s picture feeds hacked and then had to deal with the scandal of some maliciously leaked photographs, some of which they’d deleted years before?
But it’s not just massive corporations like Equifax or JPMorgan or actresses like Jennifer Lawrence that are being targeted day in and day out. It’s small businesses, many equipped with far less robust security measures. In fact, if you’re an entrepreneur, it’s almost a statistical guarantee that hackers will target your business at some point down the road.
In your company’s battle against cybercrime, it’s essential to stay abreast of the rapidly shifting digital landscape. Only the most up-to-date security technology can even hope to protect you from the ever more sophisticated thieves pounding at your digital door.
However, it’s also important to stay informed. Here are a few of the sneakiest and most common tricks thieves use to snatch your
Social Engineering Hacking, though it can cost thousands and thousands of dollars and do just as much damage as its digital counterparts, doesn’t require a single line of code. Instead, it exploits weaknesses in the “human network” of a business. For example, skilled scammers can call your business’s cellphone provider, posing as the CEO’s spouse, and convince the customer service rep to hand over passwords, Social Security numbers and sensitive personal information. Many IT departments are susceptible to this same scam.
Often, social engineering is used to gather information that will later be used for a different strategy. Such as …
E-mail Phishing, which hijacks (or fabricates) an e-mail
account with trusted authority and sends users an e-mail requesting they click a particular link. Maybe the e-mail looks like it’s from the service department of your company’s time-tracking software, seeking to remedy an error. But when the link is clicked, ransomware or other malware spreads like wildfire through the system, and the user is at the mercy of the hackers. Usually, this is used to extort exorbitant sums of money from small businesses or individuals. Symantec reports that just last year, over 7,000 businesses of all sizes fell prey to some form of phishing scam, costing them more than $740 million in total.
Brute-Force Password Attacks Or Password Guessing are just what they sound like. Either a hacker uses a software that, after putting in some data about the target (for example, the name of their dog or their anniversary), runs through potential keys ad infinitum. With sufficient information about the target, it’s only a matter of time before the software breaks through.
Or, more often than you might think, hackers can simply guess the password. Infiltrators have common passwords that use real words or common structures memorized and can run through hundreds before giving up.
Fault Injection is a different story, usually only used by the most dedicated, sophisticated hackers around the world. Cyber thieves will use a complicated software to scan the source code of their internal software or network, noting every potential weak point in the system. Then, by splicing in strings of code, they can penetrate the system and steal data, inject a virus or cause other digital mischief.
How To Protect Yourself Against These Threats
As they say, forewarned is forearmed, but it’s not enough to keep your eye out for common hacker strategies. As the progress of technology marches on, so do the techniques and software used by hackers, resulting in an infinite number of permutations of ways they can penetrate your system.
The only way to be truly secure is by utilizing bleeding-edge security solutions to ensure you stay ahead of the breakneck developments in hacker technology. With constantly updating software dedicated to security, along with some know-how, you can rest a lot easier knowing your data is safe.
You may have heard this common quote in business before: “If you can’t change the people, change the people.”
As a business coach, I’m accustomed to helping leaders and executives work through all sorts of issues. And the ones dealing with specific team members are the most common. Often, I find that even though a person may be causing specific challenges, managers want to avoid looking at the responsible party directly. But it’s important to understand that changing the people is a necessary act for any successful organization. After all, while training can improve performance, it’s difficult to change attitudes.
Below are three tips to improve the talent management and procurement process to train fruitful, challenge-free team members who will grow into leaders.
1. Avoid Stray Dogs
If you’ve ever hired any team members who turned into poorly performing players (and who hasn’t?), your first step should be to rethink
“Stray dogs” are those hires who don’t fit much of an organization’s criteria but end up getting picked anyway. To set up your talent management processes the right way, develop a process of ensuring candidates meet your criteria and steer clear of those stray dogs.
2. Trust Your Gut
Leaders are often too focused on the details in a resume and let that override their gut feelings. It might seem like a smart decision to rely on facts and figures that a candidate presents, but you can’t fully know the circumstances surrounding those victories. Sometimes, it’s best to rely on your sense of how a potential hire will perform. If there’s any doubt, move on until one feels right.
3. Triple Your Time
Finding the right people becomes more difficult when there’s a time crunch. To thoroughly vet potential hires, leaders need to start early by devoting a sufficient amount of time to the hiring process. Before getting started, identify efficiencies you can make during the hiring process. Vet candidates before you need them, not after.
As the founder of Petra Coach, Andy Bailey can cut through organizational B.S. faster than a hot knife through butter, showing organizations the logjams thwarting their success, and coaching them past the excuses we all use to avoid doing what needs to be done. Andy learned how to build great organizations by building a great business, which he started in college. It then grew into an Inc. 500 multimillion-dollar national company that he successfully sold and exited.
Eighty-two thousand NEW malware threats are being released every day, and businesses (and their bank accounts) are the No. 1 target. To make matters worse, a data breach exposing client or patient information can quickly escalate into serious reputational damage, fines, civil lawsuits, and costly litigation. If you want to have any hope of avoiding a cyber-attack, you MUST read this report and act on the information we’re providing.
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The National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) is the leading nonprofit membership association representing the interests of the volunteer fire, EMS, and rescue services. Organized in 1976, the NVFC serves as the voice of the volunteer in the national arena and provides invaluable resources, programs, education, and advocacy for first responders across the nation.
The NVFC accomplishes its mission and provides meaningful support to fire and EMS organizations through a wide range of services and programs, such as:
DP Solutions delivers managed cloud hosting services to NVFC. These services provide NVFC with the confidence that their data is reliably and consistently backed up and allows their staff the ability to work remotely from anywhere at any time.
To learn more about NVFC, visit www.nvfc.org.