2020 was indeed a tough year for almost every type of business due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Many of us do not know that this is also the same year when cyber-attacks have broken all the records.
During this time, cybercriminals and hackers have targeted all these businesses and industries that rely mostly on online operations. As a result, the online industry has witnessed a 300% rise in cybercrimes since the starting of COVID-19, as per the United States FBI.
Along with the major industries, we also need to be extra careful about our online activities. When you are installing free movies, music, and software from thenewpiratebay, you must have antivirus software.
Top Industries Targeted By Cyber Security
From the year 214 through the first half of 2018, it was businesses and healthcare or medical organizations that were affected by data breaches. During the first half of 2018, among 688 reported breaches, the majority of 3.9 breaches impacted business.
On the other hand, the medical or healthcare organizations encountered 181 data breaches. Here are the counts of other top sectors.
- Eighty-four breaches on banking, credit, and financial organizations.
- 49 breaches in government.
- 45 breaches in the military.
Business is the umbrella term, so there is no wonder why this is the industry that is most exposed to cyber threats and cybercriminals.
We can consider the retail or e-commerce part of businesses, where the companies are threatened through supply chain networking and omnichannel access. You can imagine how much financial and personal data they hold.
At the same time, small businesses are at risk as well.
When all those enterprise-level organizations usually consist of the infrastructure of eliminating or at least protecting themselves from cyber attacks, small-scale companies do not have that opportunity.
#2 Healthcare Or Medical industry
The healthcare and medical industry is the powerhouse of data. Medical and healthcare organizations access and also store electronic healthcare records that hold a large amount of both personal and financial information.
The strict compliance standards of this industry aim to detect any type of vulnerability. Still, the healthcare sector is required to lock its systems and networks in order to facilitate HIPAA compliance along with protecting ePHI or electronic protected health information.
#3 Banking And Financial Sector
For obvious reasons, this industry is one of the prime targets of cybercriminals as these types of organizations deal with the two most vital things that attackers want- personal information and money, obviously.
As per a survey that was conducted in 2016, 78% of financial organizations were confident about their cybersecurity strategies. Still, out of 3, 1 organization is successfully attacked. The average number of data breaches per year is around 85.
#4 Government Or Military
This one tends to be high profile. We believe you are not surprised at all by the mentions of government and military security breaches. This particular sector is targeted by the following.
- Hacktivists who are looking for opportunities to make a political statement.
- Foreign powers are trying to spy upon or want to negatively impact a global competitor.
- Cybercriminals are seeking to monetize the huge amount of personal information pieces, that too in local, state, and federal databases.
For a number of reasons, education institutions are targeted by cybercriminals. They are;
- Computer processing power.
- Employee and student personal information.
- Valuable intellectual property from campus research.
In addition to that, higher education institutions actually have a high turnover in their population. It eventually might result in poor password protection along with susceptibility to social engineering.
#6 Energy And Utilities
When it comes to the energy and utility sector, it is facing its own concerns. Although this sector is highly regulated and also subject to tough compliance laws, like NERC, for cyberterrorism and hacktivism, there is great potential.
Usually, they have pieces of equipment that are separated by miles of empty spaces. Motivated hackers can actually result in wide power outages undermining some critical defense infrastructure and risking the safety and health of millions of citizens.
How To Protect Your Company From Cyber Attacks
Cyberattacks are becoming more frequent. Institutions across several industries have to take action to protect their assets and data. Here are some effective tips that we will need to take.
- Install firewalls.
- Limit access to information.
- Perform a vulnerability assessment.
- Secure your Wi-Fi.
- Train the employees.
- Hire IT, professionals.