Time changes fast, technology faster, and we are forced to adapt at the quickest speed. The more we start to rely on technology, the newer challenges and risks emerge. Cybercrimes are one such challenge. Every individual and organization that is connected to digital is always at the risk of a cyber-attack. Experts estimate that cybercrimes could potentially cost the world over US$10.5 trillion annually by 2025.
However, specific sectors are more prone to cyber-attack than others. Let’s have a look at them and the risks they face.
Energy and Utilities
Major utilities are now accessible online, including the power grids. Highly regulated and subject to strict compliance laws, there is excellent potential for hacktivism and cyberterrorism in the sector. Imagine the havoc if we lost the power control to a hacker. Moreover, terrorists will undoubtedly be on the lookout for such a scenario, and thus, the highest level of cyber security is a must.
The same goes for the water supply. Recently, as witnessed in Florida, USA, a major catastrophe was averted after a hacker increased the amount of sodium hydroxide being deposited in the water. Fortunately, it was resolved in time.
Energy and utilities affect almost every individual, and the impact of a cyberattack could be enormous. Therefore, proper security measures and backup plans need to be in place.
The healthcare sector stores critical personal and institutional data, including the financial information of individuals. Consequently, it becomes an easy target for cyber experts with criminal intentions. Ransomware attacks or data thefts for blackmailing can be a common challenge.
With critical, confidential, and sensitive information like social security numbers, finance details, addresses, and citizens’ biometrics, government servers and databases are top targets for cyberattacks. The data can be manipulated, sold to enemies or terrorists. As nations get involved, the risks of worldwide impact and rising tensions increase.
The military data is even more critical and needs the highest level of cyber securities and backups.
Small and medium-sized businesses are attacked more frequently than larger ones because they usually don’t have the safety measures as more prominent companies have. Usually, small businesses and industries depend upon local security systems which are not strong enough to protect the business. In the case of an attack, if customer details are compromised, the company loses the reputation and trust of its audience.
So, all such businesses like retailers, job work industries, e-commerce services, etc., should take digital security more seriously as they are soft targets for cybercrimes.
This industry is a prime target for obvious reasons as money is the most attractive thing for any criminal. A recent survey revealed that one of every three financial institutions/ services had been attacked by cybercriminals.
The money, the personal details and financial data of consumers, the transactions and procedures of banking and financial organizations are all at risk of cyber-crimes. So, they must have controls to prevent illicit access of information and make sure customer and consumer information are adequately taken care of.
Safety of money and privacy and strict confidentiality of information have the most important here.
Educational institutions are also targeted by cyber attackers/ hackers to obtain research-related data, intellectual property research, personal information of students and staff, data and records related to exams, etc.
Often, systems in such institutions are used by many employees. Passwords are shared among them frequently and not changed after use. So, the risk of direct data theft is potent too.
Records show that all the above sectors have been attacked many times in the last decade, and the loss has been irrecoverable and irreparable. So, all the organizations engaged in these sectors must invest in cyber security on priority.
Thank you for reading the blog, and we hope you liked our series on Cyber Security. Stay tuned to our Knowledge Corner interesting blogs around next-gen technologies.