Cyber security is making the news headlines almost daily. The NHS was crippled by a ransomware incident in May and now the personal data of voters in the US has been exposed. Businesses and individuals alike need to be aware of the dangers of cybercrime and the effect that it can have on their activities.
The British Allied Trade Federation invited IT and Security Specialist ACUTEC to speak about the issue at their AGM in June to ensure that their members were aware of the risks. The British Allied Trade Federation is comprised of 5 trade federations that represents over 2500 enterprises across the UK.
Simon Gee, Business Development Manager at ACUTEC demonstrated a live hack at the federation’s office based in the Jewellery Quarter in which he sent a phishing email to a fictional Finance Director’s inbox. Shocking the audience, Simon then installed keylogging software on the Finance Director’s PC, accessing all her sensitive information such as passwords.
‘Sending a phishing email to someone is as easy as signing up for a newsletter on someone’s website,’ Simon said. ‘We wanted to show how easy it is to do but also how easy it is to fall foul of these crimes.’
With 76% of UK adults not knowing what ransomware is, ACUTEC remains concerned that cyber security is still a much-needed education in the business community. Making sure that staff are aware of the dangers that can lurk online and in their inboxes is critical to protecting businesses from financial, operational and reputational damage.
‘There is too much at stake for businesses to not start protecting themselves,’ said Chris Roche, Managing Director of ACUTEC. ‘With the changes to the law coming in from next year the consequences of suffering a cyber security breach could be astronomical.’
From 25th May next year, the General Data Protection Regulation will come into effect, with fines of up to 4% of global turnover for a business that suffers a data breach in addition to any costs or issues that arise due to the breach itself.
Any organisation that is concerned about their cyber security should contact their appropriate IT professional to ensure that all the need precautions are in place to protect their assets.