CALGARY (660News) Cybersecurity hit the headlines this month after a major online security breach shut down the Colonial pipeline. The CEO of the American company ended up paying the hackers in cryptocurrency after entering his computer system.
Although the breach was multifaceted, Brennen Schmidt, author and speaker of cybersecurity, claims that threats like this occur because security barriers are not there in the first place.
“I think what’s unfortunate is that an event like this happened so that cybersecurity came to the forefront,” Schmidt said. “We are witnessing the final results when a security system is finally not set up and is not followed. With this case, unfortunately, we see the final results of something that could have been addressed in a way that would not have affected so many people in such a negative way.
With a good portion of the people working from home during the pandemic, he adds that there are many more vulnerabilities when it comes to a cyber attack and that it is not uncommon for companies to have possible fishing scams against their mailboxes. entry (or even worse) to your customers. ‘inboxes.
One thing he believes companies can easily reveal is their brand guides or color schemes, which he says are a golden pot for cybercriminals who want to create emails with potential viruses.
Whether the business is big or small, Schmidt says there need to be barriers to stop a possible security attack, and while there is no silver solution, the first step is what he calls “password hygiene.” .
“Start smart and start easy … just trying to make sure there are passwords that rotate, that are robust, that are different for different applications, and that if someone logs in, they don’t would do. be committed with the same ease “.
Being too vigilant and not sharing your password is also something Schmidt recommends, especially when it comes to recovery questions. This means avoiding these long questionnaires posted on various social networking sites like Facebook, where you are asked about your pet’s name, where your mother was born, and so on.
Two-step authentication, password managers can save lives
While it can be annoying to enter a secondary code or log in to your app via a different email, Schmidt adds, multifactor authentication can greatly reduce your chances of cyber infringement. If done correctly, it can effectively stop cybercrime.
“To put it simply, we think of banking … If someone had your credit card and you had a post-it note attached to your credit card with your PIN, you know it would probably mean bad news for the person who has the credit card, ”Schmidt explained.
“So if we were to think in terms of appearance, with multifactor authentication, what you’re doing is breaking down these two things so that there are two different pieces of information that you need to know, even if you have access to this business card. credit. It sounds like a password if you know someone ‘s password, but if there is this second method of authentication (with the code changing randomly), that makes it much harder to extract that information. “
Schmidt adds that if passwords are hard to remember, something like a password manager could help. In this case, a person would make a very long and very hard password to enter the manager hub and then have the system create multiple passwords for all your accounts. He added that some managers can even be set up to change your account passwords at a set time, and some may tell you if some data compartments have compromised certain accounts.
The conversation around cybersecurity needs to be kept at the forefront
While cybersecurity violations like the colonial one won’t be the last, Schmidt says it’s important to report everything and not just to your employer, but also to the Canadian Center for Cybersecurity.
As a novelty this month, the RCMP’s National Cybercrime Coordination Unit moved to a new reporting method to make it easier for Canadians to report cybercrime.
“We need to really continue the conversation about cybersecurity and we need to think of it less as something that is not a matter of itself, but a matter of when.”