Cyber Security turns 20

Cyber Security turns 20

How good is your cyber security? Such is the fast pace of technological change that just when you think you might have a handle on your cyber risk management, the scammers take the next step forwards.

That’s why events such as cyber security awareness month are so important. Not only do they offer an opportunity to highlight the latest security risks, they also act as a reminder of the importance of constant vigilance.

October 2023 marks a milestone in cyber awareness, being the twentieth year in which this event has taken place. Throughout October the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) together with a range of other organisations will be sharing hints and tips for individuals and businesses with the aim of improving awareness and boosting security. Or, as the NCSC put it in their Instagram feed: “Get ready to power up your digital defence as we uncover the secrets to cyber resilience, your ultimate superpower against cyber villains.”

So, what are the main areas of concern when it comes to cyber security? One threat which hit the headlines recently was the Denial of Service (DoS) attack on the Royal Family’s official website. Sadly for businesses DOS attacks can be relatively easy for criminals to put into place. The most prevalent of these attacks simply looks to overwhelm a website or e-mail system; thereby preventing legitimate users from accessing it. Other DoS attacks may target areas such as control systems, thereby preventing critical processes from operating correctly.

The NCSC website carries information on DoS attacks, from understanding why such an attack may take place to outlining what steps can be taken to minimise its effect. It also provides access to an ‘exercise in a box’ tool which can help organisations to game play various scenarios as a means of identifying likely fail points, boosting security, and being prepared to respond to any security attacks.

As with most other forms of risk, the best defence lies with your people. Training your employees in cyber awareness could help to turn aside some cyber attacks. Even something as simple as encouraging the use of strong passwords could help to prevent criminals from gaining access to vital systems. Moreover, whilst the need to complete multifactor authentication might seem like a chore when accessing some systems, it can add significantly to security. And as for clicking on links in e-mails; the more that your people are aware that clicks could equal an open door for scammers, the better the protection.

The cyber security challenge will never go away. But by remaining vigilant and continually updating your processes and protocols, you might just help to stave off an attack which could otherwise paralyse your organisation.

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