In the last decade, the rate of cyber-attacks on businesses has increased exponentially. And no industry has been spared. According to statistics, the number of data breaches in 2020 has almost doubled, with 3,950 confirmed breaches against 2,103 recorded breaches in 2019. As of 2019, the average cost of a data breach was $3.92 million, says Security Intelligent. Despite these frightening findings, studies suggest that most companies have unprotected data and poor cybersecurity practices in place, making them vulnerable to data loss. Here are some of the most recent data breaches and what you can do to avoid being a victim.
Recent Hacks and Data Breaches
Twitter Hack (July 2020)
Twitter is one of the most popular social media platforms used today. It suffered a breach where the hackers verified Twitter accounts of high profile US personalities like Barack Obama, Elon Musk, Joseph R. Biden Jr., Bill Gates, and many more. The hackers could reset 45 user accounts’ passwords and used these accounts to post fake tweets offering to send $2000 for $1000 sent to an unknown Bitcoin address. Reportedly, the well-coordinated scam resulted in the swindling of $121,000 in Bitcoin through nearly 300 transactions.
Marriott Data Dump (March 2020)
In March 2020, the hotel giant Marriott reported a security breach that impacted the data of more than 5.2 million hotel guests who used their company’s loyalty application. Hackers acquired the login credentials of two accounts of Marriott employees who had access to customer information regarding the hotel chain’s loyalty scheme and used the information to siphon off the data nearly a month before the breach was discovered.
MGM Data Breach (February 2020)
Early this year, hackers leaked the personal details of 10.6 million hotel guests of the MGM Resorts for free download. But in the later findings, the number increased by 14 times (nearly 142 million) than the number recorded in the initial leak. The names, home addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, and DOB of high profile guests like Justin Bieber, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, and many major government agency officials were also published on the hacking forum.
Cybersecurity Measures For Businesses
Here are some of the “must follow” security protocols for your organization to stay safe in these unsafe times:
- Incorporate security awareness training into your workforce that will enable your employees to recognize and combat emerging cyber threats effectively.
- Adopt and integrate the phishing incident response tool to instantly report suspicious-looking and unsolicited emails.
- Protect your email domains against email spoofing attacks by implementing email authentication protocols such as DMARC, SPF, and DKIM.
- Update all your software and applications with the latest security patches from time to time.
- Use a VPN connection for a secured network to keep hackers and other threat actors at bay while working remotely.
Cybersecurity threats are rapidly becoming global issues, as highlighted by these recent incidents. Everyone can be affected by these threats, from small corporations to large and well-established companies. The number and sophistication of incidents are expected to continue rising, therefore underpinning companies’ need to invest in cybersecurity awareness, prevention, and security best practices a part of their culture.