On August 1st, 2022, Cisco Umbrella began blocking all traffic originating out of Russia and Belarus (source). This move was first announced by the company on March 3rd to show support for their customers and employees in Ukraine and to condemn Russia’s aggression against their country. What implications does this have for your business? Here are a few things to consider.
First, escalating global conflicts have huge cybersecurity implications for every business that connects to the internet. When one nation invades another with infantry and tanks, the news media broadcasts the heartbreaking scenes all over the world. Video clips of cities in ruins, the senseless loss of life, people grieving the loss of someone they loved—each of these tragic realities evoke emotional responses. As human beings, we are programmed to comprehend the impact of this type of warfare.
However, an ongoing battle in the digital realm is far less understood—a cybersecurity war. The outcome is not measured in loss of life, but damaged reputations, shuttered businesses, and destroyed lives. Sometimes these attacks come from lone hackers trying to make a fast buck. Often, they are waged by hacking collectives and nation-states. Once they gain access to a network or a computer, they search for ways to extort the victim.
Second, individuals and businesses can harden their security measures. Cisco has identified that many of the bad actors in this cyberwar come from areas of the world that are hostile to our own. Blocking the internet traffic by IP address that originate from these areas is one step that can be taken, however small it may be. Smart criminals generally hide behind a proxy, so it is challenging to discover the point of origin. Yet, there are steps you can take to strengthen your security.
- Install antivirus and antimalware on every computer in your network and automate scans.
- Keep computers and servers patched with the most recent updates.
- Consider Cisco Umbrella for DNS and content filtering. SUURV can set this up for your business and configure the appropriate block categories.
Finally, and most importantly, realize that the most vulnerable link in the chain of any successful hack is a human being. Ongoing training for your employees is not as expensive or as painful as you might think. It only takes a few minutes each week for your employees to understand how to protect Personally Identifiable Information (PII). Cybercriminals often use PII to stage attacks through phishing emails and links to malicious websites.
Our clients at SUURV love the online training modules and the peace of mind that comes with the services we provide to protect your PII. Give us a call at 210-874-5900 for a free consultation.
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