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You wouldn’t take a road trip without first checking your oil and tire pressure, or fly in an airplane that hasn’t had its regular safety check. Similarly, you shouldn’t initiate company culture change without first assessing your current security posture. The initial assessment will expose critical risk factors and set the course for policy and procedure updates. Some organizations embark on a program to strengthen their security infrastructure without first performing a comprehensive assessment. That’s a mistake. They risk misallocating resources and failing to address their most critical vulnerabilities.
The rise in corporate cyber-attacks costs businesses billions of dollars. From startups to large publicly-traded corporations, it is rare that a day goes by without another story of a cybersecurity breach.
A quality IT department or outsourced IT firm is the first step in the defense against cyber threats. These professionals implement the basic tools to prevent many attacks. However, even with the most well trained, staffed, and funded IT department, your business remains just one click away from undermining those protections.
For decades, the technology industry has been on a pursuit for the holy grail of prevention. The notion was that if you spent enough money, then you could stop a breach. If you simply did what your IT vendor said, bought that new firewall, upgraded your software, etc., then you’d be safe. Today’s reality? This couldn’t be further from the truth. While prevention is crucial, it’s not enough. You simply cannot spend enough money to prevent your organization from becoming a victim. There is no such thing as a ‘secure network’, only varying levels of insecurity.
After two years of steadily increasing cyber threats that resulted in record numbers of compromised patient information, financially extorted health organizations, and publicly disrupted hospital operations, it is clear that cybersecurity is a major concern for healthcare executives in 2017 and beyond.
According to Karthik Swarnam, AT&T Vice President of Security Architecture, “Cybercrime damages are expected to rise to $6 trillion annually by 2021. This represents the greatest transfer of economic wealth in history and risks the incentives for innovation and investment.” The healthcare industry has become a prime target for cyber attacks, facing security issues that have financial and reputational impact for hospitals and other healthcare institutions.
The Internal Revenue Service said, on Thursday, that the personal data of as many as 100,000 taxpayers could have been compromised through a scheme in which hackers posed as students using an online tool to apply for financial aid. According to The New York Times, the breach has the potential of being the most extensive since the 2015 tax return incident when info on over 300,000 taxpayers was used to file false claims. The IRS later increased that estimate to potentially affect 700,000 people.
Over the past year, several clients have asked me ‘how exactly does the Amazon Echo work’? More specifically, “is the Echo recording everything it hears, all the time?” This was a really great question. With millions of consumers purchasing these devices, and bringing them into their homes, workplaces – it could be a privacy nightmare. So I did what any cyber security consultant would do, I built a mini-lab to validate Amazon’s assertions and statements.