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Monthly Archives: July 2022

Internal Security Breaches

Internal Security Breaches: How to Spot Them and Stop Them

No security breach can hit on a deeper level than an internal security breach. Imagine working excitedly and painstakingly on your business, assembling a team that shares a common goal, and building a network cyber protection system just to watch it take a substantial hit from the inside. No one could blame you – sometimes we get so hung up on stories of outside threats, that we forget to focus on potential risks lurking in-house.

How do these security breaches happen? Because of oversight, forgetfulness, lack of experience, jealousy, hurt? The answers can be few and many. But below we’ll cover the most often seen internal security breaches, so you can prepare for a risk that hopefully never comes knocking on the door of your business.

Types of Insider Threats

The phrase “insider threats” is pretty explanatory as it is. But there may be some factors that you fail to consider as possible insider threats. To raise awareness of insider security breaches, we’ll list the often found culprits of such risks:

  • Vindictive Employees: There are those workers who knowingly steal, leak, or damage internal information or IT systems for their gain, corporate espionage, vindictiveness, or sabotage. These people are often swayed by malice from individuals outside the organization or by emotions like rage or greed.
  • Negligent Employees: Careless staff members may unintentionally compromise business information or networks. These individuals are unaware their actions put the company at risk of a data breach or cybersecurity attack. Negligent employees may produce internal security breaches just because they inadvertently put sensitive information in the wrong hands.
  • Unsuspecting Employees: The seeming source of the inside attack could be a worker whose computer has been compromised or whose login credentials have been stolen. Cyberattacks are used by criminals to steal employee credentials, which they then use to commit crimes under the employee’s name. 

As you can see, we chose to classify the inside threats through the lens of the people who are part of the in-house structure or ones that closely partner with the business in question. Now, whether the threat comes from a file, an app, or other data – we’ll leave a brief classification for you below:

  • Unauthorized removal, copying, transferring, or other data exfiltration methods
  • Unauthorized uses of business assets
  • Data alteration, like unauthorized data changes
  • sensitive assets deletion or destruction
  • downloading data from questionable sources
  • leveraging illegal software that might have malware or other harmful code
  • installing malicious software on purpose

All in all, you and your staff must be educated on just how easy it is to open the door to internal security breaches. It’s even more important that you know how to spot this deliberate or unintentional behavior.

Internal Security Breaches data

Insider Threat Indicators and Impact

Now we’ll briefly list the most obvious indicators of a security breach that stems from the inside:

  • Downloading or accessing an increasing amount of data
  • Accessing sensitive data not relevant to the employee in question
  • Accessing data not usual to the employee’s unique behavioral profile
  • Repeated requests for access to data not significant to the employee’s role
  • Using unauthorized storage devices (USB drives, etc.)
  • A rise in phishing attacks

We’ll take a moment now to look at what kind of impact these attacks have on organizations.

  • Loss of revenue
  • Loss of competitive edge
  • Loss of customer trust
  • Increased legal trouble
  • Complete financial fallout

Usually, when a cyber-criminal has compromised an account, they can use that data to compromise a staff member, thus making an outside attack an insider attack.

Securing Yourself from Insider Threats

One glaring statistic from Verizon’s 2022 Data Breach Investigations Report is that 82% of the recorded breaches involved a human element. Maybe you will be somewhat comforted by the fact that your staff members are 2.5 times more likely to make a mistake than to intentionally abuse their access. But that still doesn’t change the fact that you need to know how to keep sensitive company data safe.

Besides identifying the pattern of suspicious activity as advised above, here are some other steps you can take to secure your business from internal security breaches:

  • Prevent Incidents – Lower risk through blocking, monitoring (both staff access and user behavior), and real-time user notifications.
  • Secure User Privacy – To acknowledge employee and contractor privacy and comply with regulations, and anonymize user data.
  • Fulfill Compliance – Quickly and efficiently meet important compliance requirements relating to hacker attacks.
  • Integrate Tools – For better understanding, combine insider threat management and detection with SIEMs and other security tools (File Access Management, Behavioral Analytics, Email security for outbound mail, securing your staff from sending data to the wrong recipient, etc.).

These are, of course, just the basics of protection. To create and implement a full-blown cyber security strategy, the help from an external Managed Service IT Provider could be of immense assistance.

Final Word

Implementing staff monitoring, auditing system logs, maintaining open lines of communication with important stakeholders, separating duties, and training your staff to avoid common mistakes that jeopardize their credentials are all ways to protect your company. And to make it simpler for you and your team to identify and stop insider attacks, you can benefit from investing in both new and existing technologies, as well as proven experts with a good IT security track record.

Customer Support

The Best Ways to Improve Customer Support and Delight Customers

No matter how great of a product you have, its attractiveness can quickly become secondary if your customer and leads are faced with your unreliable, unpleasant, or hard-to-reach customer support.

So don’t be one of the many organizations that underestimate the importance of investing in customer service. It’s one of the many often overlooked factors for long-term business success.

That is why we prepared this neat guide to get you started with reliable support. And not only will we give tips for helping customers – we’ll give tips for delighting them, as well! That’s right, there is a slight difference, and we’ll cover that, as well.

Difference Between Regular Customer Support and Providing Customer Delight

Offering customers basic help and information just doesn’t cut it these days. Regular support means customer expectations by providing support and answering inquiries via phone, email, chat bots, live chats, etc.

Providing customer delight means going a step further. It means exceeding customer expectations and building authentic bonds that last. To do this, you need to get the customer to feel like they just had a positive experience with your brand, product, or service. Virtual and in-person events, online fairs and other happenings should use certain tools and processes to provide such a delightful customer service experience. 

Do this right, and you’ll incite an emotion. And positive emotions in business lead to loyalty.

Your business strategy, brand, and understanding of your target market all contribute to the unique experiences you provide. Customers are willing to pay more for a better product or service.

Unquestionably, having a “wow” moment can influence customers’ attitudes and improve their level of customer satisfaction. That can contribute greatly to fostering long-term brand trust and loyalty.

And the numbers support this sentiment, too. Over 65% of people have higher expectations for today than they did three to five years ago.

Improve Customer Support

10 Tips for Delivering Great Customer Service and Customer Delight

Now, here are great ways for leveling up customer support.

Get the Right People for the Job and then Provide Them Job Security

In today’s world of remote work, outsourcing, and other ways of tapping into the global pool of talent, it’s easy to slip into behavior that leads workers feeling uninspired.

Don’t treat customer support as an afterthought. Your customer service representatives shouldn’t be people just willing to sit around, and answer calls. Rather, hire those who fit the required attitude, and are willing to hone their skills. You need passionate people with empathy and patience, willing to grow and adopt new trends in customer support.

And once you have them, do try and keep them. That means not treating them as overworked call center operators, but as employees whose ideas are needed to be heard and seen.

Unify Your Communication Tone, Business Mission, and Vision Statements

Having a unified brand identity isn’t just a thing the marketing department follows. It trickles down to other departments, as well. The Support team must have a mission and vision statements they follow.

If you’re unclear about these terms, think of the mission as your team’s present primary objective. The vision statement is more of a future goal. You should keep both in mind when dealing with customers and communicating with them in a manner akin to your brand’s identity.

These things are helpful for newcomers to your team that need a sense of direction. As they grow and gather experience, they can pepper their approach with the best their own personality has to offer.

Automate Your Processes With a Help Desk Software

Surely you didn’t think we’d finish off without the perks of technology?

Enticing customer delight means using the best humans and machines have to offer. Cloud-based help desk tools can assist in taking off some work load from your team, so you can get more done in less time. That not only automates internal processes, but it also boosts employee productivity.

And automated processes also means a more refined chatbot, so that simpler inquiries can be dealt by an AI. Moreover, customer’s get more effective support 24/7, year-round! In the meantime, your employee can focus on more complicated issues.

Analyze Customer Feedback

If you’re not looking into customer feedback analytics, you’re losing valuable insight. There is lot to be learned about your product from those who have experienced it or at least looked at it with fresh eyes.

To acquire actionable feedback, you should ask for it at the end of a live chat conversation, a checkout, or the resolution of a support ticket. Some tips for analzying customer feedbacks can be found below:

  • Group feedbacks into categories
  • Sort feedback into negative, positive, and neutral ones.
  • Consolidate results to make an action plan.

Final Word

You’ve taken the right step if you’re here and taking in all the information that can help you provide better customer support.

If you’re aiming for that customer delight, doing the following won’t hurt, as well:

  • Keep Website Updated With Fresh Info and FAQ
  • Have Each Customer Support Representative Learn Thoroughly About Your Product
  • Maximize Chat and Email Templates
  • Respond Quickly
  • Utilize Creative Problem-Solving

Remember, customers want to be treated like people, not a number. For customer service-driven growth, combine your best soft skills with the wonders of technology.

hackers use AI

How Hackers Use AI and Machine Learning to Target Enterprises

AI (Artificial Intelligence) and machine learning are often touted as things that will bring both small businesses and enterprises to new levels. But the bad frequently follows the good. Meaning that while AI and machine learning improve cybersecurity, they are also being used by cybercriminals.

Cybercriminals are using advanced technology to create and launch sophisticated malware and cyber attacks that easily bypass and fool cybersecurity systems.

More complex cyberattacks are our future, along with increased frequency. So in this article, we will cover in more detail what AI and machine learning do when in the wrong hands.

Importance of Cybersecurity in 2022

With the increasing number of cyberattacks, spotting vulnerable spots in your IT infrastructure is crucial to keep your business’ data, hardware, and other software safe.

In case your company does fall victim to a cyberattack (which isn’t the end of the world because you can never be 100% safe), there are steps to take afterward. After neutralizing the threat, the important thing is to revise the security protocols using the lessons learned from the recent attack.

Another vital step is to never stop learning – hackers use AI and machine learning more and more, and you should know about the latest hacker trends and what exactly they do to extract sensitive company data.

What are AI and Machine Learning in Cybersecurity?

Artificial intelligence (AI) is great in assisting security operations analysts to tackle the cyberattacks’ increase in scale and variety. Artificial intelligence (AI) tech such as machine learning and natural language processing enables analysts to link together various threats.

Machine learning, as a subset of AI, creates automated analytical models. What this translates to is that it lets IT systems gain more insight and thus update various processes according to what the program experienced through continuous use. That allows IT systems to learn from previous calculations and adapt on their own.

Ways Hackers Use AI and Machine Learning

Hackers use increasingly sophisticated methods to breach IT security, gather information, and launch attacks. The usefulness of machine learning and AI also benefits cybercriminals. The following evolving threats in the IT sector are ones that your company needs to be aware of.

More Sophisticated Phishing Emails

Attackers create phishing emails using machine learning. On dark web forums, they are promoting the sale of these services. There, they mention utilizing machine learning to produce more effective phishing emails. They operate by creating fake personalities for use in scam efforts.

Hackers can use machine learning to creatively alter phishing emails so that they don’t appear in bulk email lists and are optimized to encourage engagement and clicks. They go beyond the email’s text. Hackers use AI to produce realistic images, social media personas, and other content to give the interaction the best possible legitimacy.

hackers use AI Cyber threat

Faster Password Guessing

Additionally, criminals use AI and machine learning to improve their password guessing skills. It is evident that password guessing engines now have more sophisticated techniques based on the frequency and success rates of criminal hacking attempts. The ability to hack stolen hashes is also improving as criminals are creating better dictionaries.

Additionally, they are utilizing machine learning to identify security measures so they can guess better passwords with fewer attempts, increasing their likelihood of success.

Using Deep Fakes

The deep fake tools that can produce video or audio difficult to distinguish from the real human speech are the most terrifying way hackers use AI and machine learning.

A few high-profile cases involving faked audio costing businesses hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars have come to light recently.

In order to make their messages seem more credible, scammers are increasingly using artificial intelligence and machine learning to create realistic-looking user-profiles and videos. It’s a huge industry. Since 2016, company email scams have caused over $43 billion in losses, according to the FBI.

Social Engineering

Cybercriminals use the tactic of social engineering to trick and convince victims to disclose confidential details or perform a specific action, like sending money abroad or opening an infected file.

By making it simpler and faster for them to gather data on businesses, employees, and partners, AI and machine learning make use of the actions of criminals. In other words, social engineering-based attacks are strengthened by artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Final Word

There are so many different aspects of cybersecurity to cover, and we covered just a tiny portion in this article. But it is enough to get you started and realize just how much hackers use AI and machine learning.

So if criminals are using the best technology out there to perform malicious activities, you should be breathing down their necks, too, by continuously updating your security systems.

Because remember – AI and machine learning can keep you safe from various cyber threats.

security threat cyber attack

Logic Bomb – A Hidden Security Threat

While it may seem daunting to continuously stay informed on security threats, you have to face the reality that that’s the norm these days. After all, the accessibility of technology brings with it malicious activity, with cybersecurity attacks being performed daily all over the globe.

From hopeful startups to enterprises with thousands of workers depending on their efficiency, all the way to individuals and whole governments trying to preserve peace – all organizations and individuals are in jeopardy when it comes to cybersecurity.

So that is why you should be vigilant to prevent potential attacks and lessen their impact if they do occur. That is why today we will cover the topic of the logic bomb – what is it, and how do you keep your business and yourself safe?

Definition of a Logic Bomb

A logic bomb is a piece of code inserted by cybercriminals into operating systems, programs, apps, and networks. It lies dormant and is activated once certain conditions are met.

Once activated, the logic bomb “goes off” which in this case means files start getting deleted, hard drives get erased, and sensitive data becomes corrupted.

If you want to get more technical – logic bombs are not malware. Rather, security threat being present is a part of the malware. Some well-known types of malware are viruses and works, and logic bombs can be a part of their code. But while other kinds of malware can often infect a system on their own, malware containing logic bombs is frequently inserted by an inside man – a displeased employee or a worker who secretly started working for the competition.

And just like timebombs, logic bombs are triggered by a specific condition, one that’s coded into them.

security threat cybersecurity

How Do Logic Bombs Work?

Let’s get more into the inner workings of a logic bomb.

The conditions that trigger these bombs can be:

  • Positive: Such logic bombs go off after a condition is met – after a file is opened, for instance.
  • Negative: Such logic bombs actually go off when a condition is not met – for instance, if the logic bomb isn’t disabled in time.

Logic bombs can inflict serious damage even to reputable financial reputations by wiping out their data. Here are other ways logic bombs affect your IT infrastructure and network:

  • Using system resources
  • Restricting or prohibiting legitimate user access
  • Letting hackers into your system via backdoors
  • Tampering with data
  • Wiping out data

Having in mind that attackers usually exploit the software development lifecycle to insert a logic bomb, you should act preemptively against these security threats.

Logic Bomb Prevention: Short Overview

Just like real physical bombs, logic bombs hit your business or government when you least expect them. What can you do to keep your data and employees safe?

Get Yourself a Trusty Antivirus Software

The foundation for a cyber-secure working environment is made from two things – educated employees aware of the threats lurking in the digital world, and reliable antivirus software. Robust apps and software stop the malware before it gets the chance to infect devices in your IT system.

Moreover, by getting a proven antivirus software, you are probably also signing up for software that updates constantly to ensure a safer online experience.

Educating Employees on Cybersecurity

While the most educated teams working for your organization should be your in-house IT team and your outsourced managed service provider, other people working for you should also grasp the dangers of the online world.

Continuous education through online courses and live conferences is a great investment. Not only do teams get to go on team buildings, but you get real value from them being sent to learn about cybersecurity. That way, you lessen the chance of them unintentionally letting in a security threat into your system by downloading something from an untrusted source.

Monitor and Maintain Your Operating System

Just as you’d get a security guard to work in your office space, you should do the equivalent for your organization in its virtual setting.

Your cloud, the data on it, and the data stored on hardware – all of it should be protected round the clock. If your full-time IT team has problems covering all shifts, then monitoring your operating system could be handed over to an outsourced team.

Also, they can handle the updates for the operating system, allowing you and the in-house teams to focus on other challenges. In the meantime, your OS gets updated with new features and enhanced security.

Final Word

Logic bombs are challenging to find once in your network. They are hidden within legitimate programs and apps. Most organizations won’t be aware that a security threat is lurking in their IT infrastructure or systems until the bomb goes off. The first step is realizing what you’re up against, and then you can work with your in-house team or dedicated outsourced experts to flesh out a cybersecurity strategy fit for 2022.

Cyber Extortion

What Is Cyber Extortion and How to Protect Yourself From It?

Technology is changing by the day. And while we reap many benefits from it, other people are also taking advantage by engaging in criminal behavior that is extremely damaging to individuals, organizations, and whole governments.

One of the many risks lurking online is the theft of valuable data. Lots of it is stolen for cyber extortion. Its most common form is ransomware – a sophisticated and emerging form of malware. Country leaders, CEOs, and individuals should be ready and equipped with knowledge not just to mend from such attacks but also to prevent them altogether.

Find out what forms cyber extortion takes and how you can protect yourself from it.

Definition of Cyber Extortion

Cyber extortion is an online attack that has the goal of extracting huge ransom sums. It often involves criminals that threaten with server failures and/or data encryption – which locks your access to previously accessible data.

The act of taking data hostage can happen when you or your knowledgeable staff clicks on malicious links that automatically download malware, encrypt your files, and locks you out. Another thing a hacker can do is copy your important data. As with real-life extortion, psychology plays a massive part in the whole process, with cyber criminals making outrageous ransom requests, for which you have no way of knowing if they are being serious or bluffing.

Most Common Types of Cyber Extortion

Cyber extortion can take many forms since every piece of data stolen in any way can be used for extortion purposes. But the most common types of cyber extortion take form in the following ways:

Cyber Extortion Ransomware


Ransomware is the most frequently found form of extortion. In these cases, criminals hack into your network and take your data hostage or any other important element of your IT infrastructure and network. Then these cybercriminals contact you or leave a message demanding payments in exchange for the safe return of your data and for preventing the data to be leaked or sold to a third party. These days criminals often ask for payment in cryptocurrency.


Another often-seen sort of cyber extortion includes a DDoS attack. It’s done by cyber criminals who send a large number of fake service requests to your web server, which overloads its capacities. Sending out these fake requests is done through infected servers (botnets).

That overload renders your website non-functional and stops it from serving users who visit the site. Not only does that cause downtime and make your users switch over to your competition, but it can also cause a loss of capital and/or stakeholders

Email-based Cyber Extortion

There are some overlaps between different types of extortion, and such is the case with email-based cyber extortion. While the attack itself could’ve been done in a myriad of ways, what defines email-based extortion is that the threat comes through the email, and the attacker threatens to release private information through emails sent to your entire address book, which often includes colleagues, family, and friends.

Cybercriminals often obtain sensitive emails, pictures, videos, and more.

How to Protect Yourself From Cyber Extortion?

Cyber Extortion Cyber Attack

Since cybercriminals are no danger to you until they breach your network, the main question now is – how do you prevent extortion?

There are several ways, the most prevalent and useful ones being:

  • Educating Your Employees: Unfortunately, breaches often happen because employees are not informed enough about the dangers of cyberattacks. Your older staff can particularly be vulnerable to scams and downloading malware. Make sure you send your work staff to cyber security courses.
  • Backing Up Data: This is the first and most useful step. Because no matter how hard you try, you can never be 100% safe. Backing up data regularly will save you from lots of stress, money losses, and internal conflicts.
  • Implementing a Patch Management System: Hackers are constantly seeking weak points in networks. Regularly check your network for potential security gaps and apply software patches to close them.
  • Applying a Strong Password Policy: Attackers can take advantage of your system if you use default administrator usernames and passwords. Default passwords should be changed, and strong passwords used. Avoid using the same password for several different accounts, add special characters and numbers to a password, and change it frequently.

Final Word

Ransomware is one of the most prevalent types of digital attack and is rapidly evolving. Your organization must develop its systems to guarantee that data is safeguarded from cyber extortion both now and in the future. You can ensure your company is safe in 2022 and beyond by doing detailed ransomware risk assessments and employing the help of proven Managed Service Providers.