As IT security experts, there are a few cyber scenarios that we see cropping up time and time again. We are therefore able to help warn against and prevent them and, if they do happen, limit damage and help our clients to recover.

To bring Cyber Safe October to a close, we want to share some of the most common but easily preventable cyber scenarios with you, so you know exactly how to stop them becoming scary prospects for your business.

Scenario 1: Giving away secrets on social media

Your social media profiles provide strangers with all sorts of information about who you are and what is important to you. If those strangers have criminal intentions, you could end up having your business accounts hacked, losing valuable data and money. If a member of your staff talks about their dog on Facebook, hackers will use brute force software to try thousands of variations of that dog’s name when trying to break their password, potentially used for work emails and systems.

You and your employees should not be using personal information to set passwords. Instead, use a random password generator to make those passwords as hard to hack as possible, and use a password manager to make your life a lot easier.

Scenario 2: Mysterious payments, apparently authorised by you

Some scammers don’t mind playing the long game. If they gain access to the Chief Executives email address, they will watch and learn how the boss likes to communicate and then wait until they are going to be out of touch for a while, for example, on holiday. Then, they send an email, pretending to be the boss, with a new payment request, often making the request sound urgent. Many members of staff will just pay it, believing it to be a legitimate request from an authorised source. Next thing you know, there’s a significant chunk of money missing from the company bank account and one member of staff is left feeling incredibly guilty and embarrassed. Scammers are clever but you can be too, training your staff to be thorough and alert in all cyber security matters – particularly where sensitive data and finances are involved – is essential.

Scenario 3: Microsoft won’t help to fix my hacked software

Microsoft support is generally excellent for the software and hardware it produces and its security defences and updates are robust and reliable. However, once Microsoft expires certain versions of its software, you can no longer rely on this support meaning that your software and systems become extremely vulnerable. In January 2020, Microsoft officially discontinues all support for lots of very popular software including Windows 7, Office 2010, and a lots of server software. Meaning if it breaks or gets hacked, Microsoft won’t fix it. Expired software is a major security risk, and also against GDPR so you should make it a priority to upgrade before the end of 2019.

We hope that none of these scary cyber scenarios have made you break out in a cold sweat; we hope you’ve already thought about them and have it sorted. If you don’t, then do not panic – we are more than happy to help and we have tons of experience in all of these areas.

Just get in touch with us today for a no obligation chat.