The Increasing Risks Associated With Cyber Security
According to the UK government Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2021, 39% of UK businesses and 26% of charities reported cyber breaches or attacks over a 12-month period. 27% of those businesses and 23% of those charities reported these incidents occurring at least once a week.
From small scale personal attacks to widespread cybercrime that impacts tens, even hundreds of thousands of victims. Phishing, ransomware and cryptomining are just some of the ways businesses are vulnerable.
In 2021, Florida based IT firm Kaseya had its management system hacked in an incident that affected 800 to 2,000 organisations, scrambling data and rendering systems frozen. Cybercrime syndicate REvil took credit for the attack, labelled it the worst ransomware attack to date.
The level of disruption is gargantuan. In May last year, cyberattacks on a US fuel transporter led to a shutdown of 5,500 miles of critical infrastructure along the East Coast. Gas shortages and panic buying ensued in the resulting chaos.
And it’s not only large companies that are affected. Even small businesses are at risk, with losses often even more devastating than those faced by larger, more established companies.
No Sign of Slowing Down
Each year, billions are lost in cyber attacks, and it’s showing no sign of slowing down.
GlobalData predicts that the global cyber insurance market will reach $20.6bn (£15bn) in gross written premium (GWP) by 2025; a jump from $7bn in 2020.
Ransomware has been increasingly prevalent. According to software company Bitdefender, nearly a quarter of all cyber incidents worldwide in 2020 were ransomware attacks.
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Technology, the Pandemic & Cyber Security
Our growing interdependence on technology is further opening us up to these kinds of attacks. Older risk management strategies are becoming obsolete.
The pandemic has been a catalyst. Companies had to rapidly adapt to remote working and new cyber practices, often overnight, leaving weaknesses vulnerable to exploitation. Cybercriminals saw the opportunity and pounced, delivering a surge of new attacks. Many of which devastated businesses already struggling to adjust to the new normal.
The move to remote working has presented plenty of challenges. When it comes to cybercrime, systems that were less than robust have had their flaws exposed and exploited. Increased reliance on email has led to a rise in phishing emails, with many remote employees unequipped to know how to deal with these issues when they arise.
Educating Ourselves To Combat Cyber Crime
The good news is, public awareness is growing. More and more companies are successfully identifying risks and working to make their systems and processes more cyber secure.
Many insurers are educating themselves and their clients about the changing risks. Businesses should take advantage of these opportunities to learn and increase their cyber resilience. Finding a good insurance provider is essential. They can help companies mitigate their risks, taking action and putting strategies in place to protect themselves.
Insurers have a vested interest in making sure businesses are resilient against cyber attacks. Stakeholders should closely examine any exposures their insurance provider instructs them to reduce.
At an immediate, company level, practicing good cyber hygiene goes a long way. Secure passwords, a limited number of privileged accounts with management responsibility, ensuring all machines in a network are secure – relatively simple practices that can make a big difference.
Moving Forward And Addressing Risks
This is a permanent shift.
It’s like running on shifting plates. As soon as companies think they’ve found their footing, new risks arise. Hackers and cybercriminals are investing in their trade, finding new methods to cause maximum harm. Cyber professionals and insurers need to stay reactive, anticipating future threats. Vigilance is key.
Traditional insurance policies are no longer enough. A standalone cyber policy offers more robust coverage. Many feature invaluable risk mitigation services. Providing companies with a guide for increasing their resilience.
As the way we work and the technology we use change, we need to be ready to face whatever risks come along.
Support And Advice
Arming your business with the best possible advice and support can give you peace of mind. We’re here to help. Speak to one of our specialists on 0117 325 2224 or at firstname.lastname@example.org for solid advice around your cyber security risk management needs.