Now is the time to be preparing your business for 2022 and, with a cyberattack being launched every 39 seconds, cybersecurity should be top of your to-do list. The types of cyberattacks on businesses are constantly evolving and it is crucial that your organisation stays one step ahead of cybercriminals.
Throughout 2020 and 2021, the world has been preoccupied with the Covid-19 pandemic. This period has had a huge impact on businesses of all shapes and sizes and kept governments and other organisations busy preparing recovery plans. Unfortunately, cybercriminals have been hard at work too, taking advantage of teams working remotely and businesses changing their security processes.
It is clear that protecting your business from cybercrime is vital and products like cyber liability insurance are a great place to start. As well as having the right cybercrime insurance, your business needs to stay on top of emerging trends in cybercrime.
Here are some of the key cyber risks to be aware of in 2022:
Pandemic phishing attacks
Phishing has been a common type of cyberattack for many years, but criminals are becoming savvier with their methods. Recently, we have seen a rise in phishing attacks and cybercriminals are using the Covid-19 pandemic as a way to instil fear into individuals. A growing trend is phishing attacks which aim to con people into giving away their sensitive information. A recent example of this has been emails and calls to elderly individuals in the UK promising them Covid-19 vaccines if they provide the personal data requested. In some cases the phishers obtained bank details and sensitive information. Other pandemic-related phishing scams include emails supposedly offering health advice or details on remote working.
Ransomware attacks have been on most businesses’ radar for many years, and despite the number of attacks decreasing in 2019, they are starting to rise again. As millions of businesses have changed the way they operate over the last year, and undergone rapid digitalisation, the threat of ransomware attacks has increased.
Cybercriminals are constantly developing new versions of malware to evade the growing number of decryption tools around. Unfortunately, these criminals are masters at staying one step ahead when it comes to ransomware attacks.
With more and more individuals using their mobiles than ever before, and many businesses providing employees with company phones while working remotely, it is no surprise that mobile malware is on the rise. New technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) are being used to evolve current malware attacks and highlight new opportunities for cybercriminals.
In 2020, Microsoft’s 365 Defender Research Team discovered a new type of Android malware which was far more sophisticated than any other mobile malware attack before. Those who fell victim to this attack had their devices fully disabled and were forced to pay a ransom to the attackers to gain control again.
In 2022, it seems that cyberattacks will no longer be reserved just for thieves and criminals. Hacktivism, or cyberactivism, is the online version of protestors fighting their points on a specific agenda. These activists are beginning to add to the number of cybercrimes which are happening every day and it is a trend which shows no signs of slowing.
Cyberactivists work to block or takeover a company’s website or interrupt their operations. The goal is to drive awareness of a business’ bad practices or get their case across to those higher up in the company. One example of cyberactivism took place last year, when Anonymous made a list of names related to Jeffrey Epstein public.
All businesses are aware that data breaches are a common occurrence and despite being around for so long, they are still one of the largest cyber threats to organisations. Each year, the amount of data breaches that occur increases, and it isn’t expected to change going into 2022. Despite the introduction of GDPR, and businesses taking more steps to secure data, the number of breaches in 2020 increased again.
Just in the first quarter of 2020, data breaches rose by a massive 273%. Of all the data breaches that occur, a huge 28% of them are within small businesses, usually because their security is less robust. With 25% of small businesses forced to file for bankruptcy following a significant data breach, having the right precautions and cyber insurance in place are critical.
To find out more about cyber insurance and how it can help to protect your business, contact our expert team on 01603 218000.