Recently we discussed about major data breaches and what to do such a frustrating situations from happening to an organization or oneself.But we didn’t dig deeper into how data breach really happen or how hackers really get into a security system.
In this article we will be discussing just that.Prevention is better than cure,ain’t it?
Let us take at look at how some recent attacks took place and what can be done to prevent it from happening as well as identify and respond before it’s too late.
Like how most people think you don’t have to be pro hacker to commit a crime like this.Malwares can be a good example of this.
Malwares are tools that are designed to exploit a specific vulnerability.People can purchase these from hackers or other illegal platforms such as the Deep Web.And these malwares can be used to exploit certain vulnerabilities present in the targets.
Malwares can be used to exploit card transactions because it is the easiest way to get hands on some easy money,and most POS (point-of-sale) systems of hotel chains and retailers are flooded with vulnerabilities.
And these malwares come in many different forms such as adware, spyware, bots, ransomware, Trojan horses, viruses and worms are some of the most common ones.It’s impossible to know since when a malware has been residing in a system since most modern malwares are as stealthy as it can get except some like the ransomware which really makes its presence clear.
Some well-known malware attacks
The list wouldn’t be complete without the 2017’s WannaCry outbreak, but it wouldn’t also be a perfect example of how ransomware works.The malware’s worming skills made it literally impossible for even the attackers to keep track of which systems they infected.
Ransomware attacks usually target small organizations that may not have the best cyber security solutions.Scotland-based Arran Brewery was hit by a ransomware attack last month.Hackers did this by sending a email that featured a ransomware payload carried within a PDF file. The crooks demanded 2 bitcoin(apx 9,76,000INR) to hand over the decryption keys, but the brewery declined and lost 3 months worth of data.Moreover, paying the ransom would have made Arran Brewery a target for future attacks.
This type of data breach is caused when an employee mess up something within the organization.For instance they could lose maybe a pen drive containing sensitive info which could disclose a lot of information about the organization or maybe even grant access to the organization on top of revealing sensitive data.
Verizon’s 2018 Data Breach Investigations Report found that almost one in five data breaches was the result of human error.Accidental breaches are impossible to eradicate because we humans do make mistakes.In some cases it’s just negligence or other times it is the direct result of miscommunication(employee wasn’t explain what he was suppose to do).
Hackers send emails impersonating legitimate organizations and attempting to get employees to click malicious links or attachments. If they fall for it, hackers get access to personal information or allow malware to infect the systems.
Phishing attacks are often generic messages sent in bulk in the hope of catching people off guard. You might receive a message claiming to be an invoice that you need to pay, or someone pretending to be a colleague might ask you to send over a document.
Attacks often take advantage of on major ongoing events. For example, in the run-up to the 2018 FIFA World Cup,million of people got email claiming to be from Coca-Cola, one of the tournament’s sponsors, offering a $1 million lottery prize. All you had to do was follow the link and provide your personal details.Except that there was no prize waiting for the people but the hackers got personal info and financial info of people as a prize.
So always be aware and make the cyber security system breach ready and be cautious and also inform others around you to do the same to prevent data breaches from happening and to build a more secure tomorrow.
Originally written for RedTeam Hacker Academy