According to IBM, the average data breach cost in the world in 2022 is 4.35 million dollars, which is pretty high. These costs arise from potential settlements and high customer turnover following the negative effect of the data breach on your brand. You may also invest in in-house investigations to determine the cause of the violation.
Investing in cybersecurity early on can help you avoid losses caused by data breaches. For example, your staff should have stronger credentials, such as longer, unique passphrases that are hard to hack. Also, malware attacks will nevermore compromise your assets if you install anti-virus software.
This article will explain in detail how data breaches happen and how to prevent them.
How Data Breaches Happen
A data breach occurs when a cybercriminal accesses your data source and extracts sensitive information about your company. They can do this by physically accessing your employee’s computers or remotely bypassing the security measures of your network.
1. Unintentional Data Breach
Unintentional data breaches happen when employees access certain information without prior authorization permissions. For example, a co-worker may be using your computer to complete a project and accidentally read files coming through notifications in real-time. Even though the access was unintentional, it’s still considered a data breach.
2. Deliberate Data Breach
Bad employees can deliberately access sensitive information to harm your organization. These employees may sometimes have authorized access to the sensitive data but use it for vile ends. They could sell it to criminals or use the data to extort the company.
3. Stolen Devices
Data breaches can also occur when cyber criminals steal your company devices, such as laptops, smartphones, external hard drives, and flash disks. If your devices lack robust security features like passwords and multifactor authentication, cybercriminals will easily access information in them.
4. Attacks By Cybercriminals
Cybercriminals can steal your company data using malicious methods such as phishing, malware, and brute force attacks. Phishing involves hackers sending unsuspicious emails to your staff, luring them to click a link, or giving up their username and password. Once they acquire this information, they can log into your computer network without your IT team noticing.
Malware attacks target flaws in your computer operating system, network, servers, and other software. Criminals can introduce malware into your computer systems to steal private data they can sell to competitors.
Brute force attacks involve deliberately trying to hack your passphrases using technology. If you have shorter passwords, hackers can use computers to guess them in as little as half an hour. Longer and unique passwords take more time to guess.
Cybersecurity Measures To Prevent Data Breaches
Now that you know how data breaches occur, these are some cybersecurity practices you can implement to prevent data breaches at your company:
1. Use Password Managers
Password managers are used for creating and storing passphrases. They can help prevent data breaches by allowing employees to create longer and more unique passphrases that will be harder to crack. This way, they’ll only need to remember the password that gives them access to the password manager.
2. Install Anti-Malware Software
Anti-malware software may help to prevent malware attacks by cybercriminals. Malware can compromise your computer network, enabling hackers to steal important information without you even noticing. But with the anti-malware software, you’ll block any attempts to introduce viruses into your network.
3. Encrypting Data In Your Devices
Data encryption enables you to restrict the number of people who can access sensitive information. When transferring data from your computer network into devices like external hard drives and flash discs, ensure you encrypt the data. This way, no one will consume the information in the devices if they get into the wrong hands.
Investing in cybersecurity helps you to prevent the consequences of data breaches. Many companies have gone out of business due to the negative effect of data breaches on their brand. To reduce the chances of experiencing data breaches, you can buy password managers for your team, install anti-malware software on your devices and encrypt data to minimize access.