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5 most common network security risks

Cybercriminals use many methods to try and infiltrate your business and cause damage. As the world grows more reliant on technology and businesses operate almost entirely with the help of digital tools, from day-to-day to more advanced technology, we need to be more aware of network security. If your business is aware of common network security issues, you can prepare robust cybersecurity strategies to protect your data.

Following are 5 of the most common network security risks:

  1. Malware

A malware attack targets a victim network and damages it by exploiting security flaws. Malware refers to malicious software that cybercriminals use to damage a victim network, whether by exploiting security flaws or causing data leaks. Malware includes:

  • Virus: embeds itself in a legitimate program, exploiting the program to replicate itself.
  • Rogue security software: pop-ups notify you that your computer has viruses or outdated security patches and mislead you to buy security software, which downloads malicious code onto your machine.
  • Worms: self-replicating malware that takes advantage of a host network to infect connected systems
  • Trojan attacks: trick users to open an email or download a file that contains hidden malware, which installs on your system.
  • Ransomware: one of the fastest growing malware, files are encrypted and a ransom is demanded in return for the decryption key.
  • Spyware: keyloggers are secretly installed to record personal information such as email address, bank account details, passwords etc.

2.   SQL injection attacks

SQL injection attacks are a serious risk because they bypass all data security measures, such as firewalls and encryption, and they can be executed from a wide variety of platforms. In fact, they are often more convenient than conventional methods of accessing data because they require no login credentials and they are publicly accessible. The best way to avoid SQL injection attacks is to use a trusted and well-validated data source.

3.   Human error

Around 90% of all cyber breaches result from human error, such as phishing attacks, poor password management, careless use of the internet, and lack of security awareness when it comes to clicking on links from unknown sources. Your company’s network can be damaged, sensitive information stolen, and there can be serious consequences if your business has been found to not comply with regulations around data privacy.

4.   Distributed denial-of-service (DDoS)

Common networking attacks that target a website’s services are known as Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS). Threat actors infect internet-connected devices, turning them into bots that inundate IP addresses, resulting in an overwhelming volume of internet traffic. This causes websites to crash and go offline.

DDoS attacks can be prevented by installing a firewall, a form of security software that blocks malicious traffic from reaching a network. Other precautionary measures that can be taken to prevent DDoS attacks are updating antivirus software, switching from a fixed IP address to a dynamic one, monitoring traffic patterns, and employing a Content Delivery Network (CDN).

5.   Man-in-the-middle attacks

Attackers can intercept traffic between networks and external websites or within networks, staging a man in the middle attack. If communication protocols are not secured or if attackers can circumvent that security, they can intercept the data being transmitted, steal user credentials, and hijack their sessions.

One example of this is the risk posed by public wireless networks. While these connections can be convenient for guests and visitors, they open the door to malicious activity. If users access sensitive websites or transfer sensitive data over public networks, they leave themselves open to man-in-the-middle attacks. One way to mitigate this risk is by using a virtual private network (VPN). A VPN can encrypt your communication, preventing man-in-the-middle attackers from viewing your data.

Get best-in-class network security from the experts

Your business can protect its data and networks from disasters and the growing risk landscape by taking several measures. You and your employees must keep data backed up, ensure that security is a top priority for all employees, and restrict network access to authorized individuals only to respond to potential risks.

Robust network management and security are critical to safeguarding against data breaches. Data breaches can be detrimental to business operations if proper network security is not maintained. Talk to the managed security specialists at INTELLIWORX today to improve your network security and empower your business.

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