Did you know that there were 281,094 internet-borne Cyber attack attempts on each UK business in 2018? In many cases, good practices and security prevent damage, but can you prepare for every breach attempt? What is your back up plan?
Cyber attacks are on the rise
With hundreds of thousands of Cyber attacks per year, it is little wonder that some challenges are successful. We all know that Cybercrime is on the rise, but the reality is that we are only aware of the successful attacks on our practices, or the obvious attempts of attacks such as phishing or ransomware.
According to IT services provider, Beaming, the level of attacks by Cyber criminals has increased by 23% from 2017 to 2018.
Many attempts are targeted at applications, such as security cameras that are remotely controlled on the internet, and network device administration tools. File sharing applications are also a target.
With attacks coming from all angles, practice owners need to consider multiple layers of protection, and keep this up-to-date in order to protect themselves from an attack.
The risk for healthcare practices is huge
Increasingly, we are seeing Cyber attacks on smaller businesses. The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has shared reports of an increase in security breaches to small businesses because they do not have the resources to invest in prevention and are considered easier targets.
Medical and dental practices hold a lot of sensitive and personal data – information that cannot be easily changed, as bank account and credit card details can. This makes it highly valuable to Cyber criminals. Patient data is also vital to keeping a practice running, so hackers know that practice owners are likely to pay a ransom to get their files back if they ‘lock’ your access.
Find the key to your protection
With GDPR fines of up to €20million, or 4% of annual global turnover for non-compliance, as well as the stress and time it takes to report and resolve breaches, the consequences for practices can be enormous. It’s sensible to consider the key vulnerable areas and see where you can give yourself the best chance of preventing a breach. Some areas for consideration include:
- Apply IT software updates – Security patches and updates are vital in closing loopholes in your technology. Don’t delay installing these so hackers can’t exploit vulnerabilities.
- Maintain good password practices – Choose complex passwords (no Password1!), change them regularly and don’t share them with others.
- Implement a strong risk culture – Lead from the top and practise what you preach. Your team will take their lead from you and if they see that you take Cyber security seriously, so will they.
- Invest in staff training – Human error is often the weakest link in online security. Teaching employees about what to look out for and what to trust (and not trust) will significantly reduce your changes of a breach.
- Choose Cyber liability insurance – No matter how good your practices are, Cyber criminals are good. For your own peace of mind, make sure that you have a good insurance policy that will provide you with the support you need in your hour of need.
Contact us to discuss your Cyber liability protection strategy and keep your practice running in a crisis.