Most government and industry experts agree that cybercrime is set to grow massively over the next few years. In order for individuals and companies to understand how to deal with it, they must first understand the nature of the threat, and what measures can be to prevent it.
The recent spate of cyberattacks, including the one on Travelex, highlights the growing use of ransomware as the preferred crime of choice. Ransomware attacks are becoming more and more common, and are not simply aimed at big companies and corporations anymore.
Many ransomware attacks are aimed at hospitals, local and national government bodies, large and small businesses as well as private individuals.
Cybersecurity refers to a number of measures that can be taken by any organisation or individual that can help to prevent this type of threat, as well as all other types of cybercrime.
A lot of cybercrime involves trying to fraudulently obtain money from individuals or businesses, and it often includes theft of information or personal data. Such information is usually highly sensitive, and any type of data breach is a serious issue for organisations, both legally and financially.
Most organisations hold a significant amount of information about their customers and clients, which is potentially at risk from any type of cyber attack. Data protection has become a necessity for any businesses, who must operate under the framework of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018.
In addition to knowing how to protect customer data, it is crucial that any business knows the basics of how to protect themselves against a cyber attack. Cyber Essentials is a UK Government initiative that provides detailed guidance on how a business can develop an effective cybersecurity programme.
It covers areas such as securing an internet connection, how to secure hardware and software, controlling access to data and devices, protection from viruses and malware and how to make sure this is updated on a continual basis.
Cyber Essentials Plus
The government also offers a program known as Cyber Essentials Plus, which allows an individual or business to receive certification from an independent body, that they are fully compliant with the principles of cyber essentials.
This verification can have real benefits for any business. Aside from being listed in a government directory of compliant organisations, it sends a message to existing and new customers that the business takes its cybersecurity responsibilities extremely seriously.
The Cyber Essentials program is delivered by the government with a partner consortium, the IASME. They oversee the certification process, and have a wealth of experience in helping a number of industries, including healthcare and defence, develop effective cybersecurity initiatives and programmes.
They also have extensive experience in helping develop cybersecurity defences for internet-enabled devices (IoT), where many of the future threats to cybersecurity will come from.