Digital technology has become a huge part of businesses today, fundamentally changing the way we work. Many businesses have turned to cloud adoption as part of their digital transformation journey. However, cloud security remains a challenge for businesses. Several businesses have succumbed to devastating data breaches, despite having numerous security measures in place. Where could they be going wrong?
The strength of an organization’s security is largely dependent on its weakest link. In this article, we take a closer look at the weakest link in the cyber chain – humans.
The Human Factor and Cloud Security
The weakest points in cybersecurity are often the ones you pay the least attention to. People are the most common entry points used by hackers. According to a recent report, 95% of cloud computing failures in 2022 will be the organization’s mistake. The following are some of the most common ways in which hackers exploit employees to get their hands on critical assets.
Hackers feed on the psychological weaknesses of humans to gain access to cloud assets. They do this by using various social engineering techniques such as phishing, pretexting, quid-pro-quo, baiting, and tailgating. The most popular attack among these is phishing. 91% of all cyberattacks begin with a phishing email. Phishing attacks are one of the top threats used to hack the cloud. They use fraudulent emails, often with an urgent message to bait unsuspecting employees into divulging sensitive information. Phishing is especially dangerous because the emails are extremely hard to detect and seem like they are from a legitimate entity.
Access to The Cloud
Many serious data breaches have often been caused by resentful employees who have left the organization. This is because ex-employees sometimes still have access to old corporate accounts. There might also be certain employees within the company who have malicious intentions but have access to important and confidential data. These bad actors pose a great threat to your organization because the losses you face could be at their hands.
Protecting hardware assets are just as important as implementing a good cybersecurity solution. More often than not, this critical aspect of security is overlooked by companies. Employees have been found leaving their computers unmanned and unlocked. They may also have valuable information stored in USB drives which they carry outside office premises. Each of these instances is a vulnerability. These devices can be stolen to access the cloud. Moreover, weak passwords or similar passwords for multiple accounts make it all the more easy for hackers to steal data.
Don’t Let The Next Hack Be You
Cloud hacks don’t just put your data at risk, but they could also result in huge financial and reputational losses, and the loss of customer trust. This is an enormous price to pay for any business. However, there are some steps you can take to ensure that human error doesn’t get the best of your cloud security.
Access Management and Multi-Factor Authentication
Cloud providers usually encourage businesses to move all their data to the cloud storage. However, you can control who has access to this data. If an employee doesn’t need certain files or systems to do their job, they shouldn’t have access to it. HR and IT departments must work together to ensure that access privileges are removed for exiting employees as soon as they leave.
In addition, you must also have the most secure authentication and ID verification tools in place to secure your cloud environment. You can choose a cloud vendor that offers a Multi-Factor Authentication System with their package. This would drastically improve the security of your cloud assets.
Hardware Security and Data Encryption
You must ensure that all your devices and accounts are secured with a strong password. Passwords must not be shared with anybody other than the device user. Always keep your important files, ID Cards, and devices with you. If your devices are ever stolen, switching on location, and using ‘Find My Device’ can help you locate them.
Furthermore, encryption makes sensitive data useless if and/or when it falls in the hands of an attacker. Use a full-disk encryption software to encrypt all critical information such as business data, employee, and customer information.
Cybersecurity awareness training remains the most under-spent area of the cybersecurity industry, but it is our only shot at defeating social engineering attacks. Hackers will always choose to exploit human beings over technology as humans are the easiest targets for them. Cybersecurity awareness programs educate employees about the fast-evolving threat landscape of today, using engaging tools. Each employee at every level of an organization must be well-equipped to identify a potential attack.
Human error is the biggest risk when it comes to cybersecurity. You could have the best firewalls like AppTrana and security practices in place, but they cannot save you if your most vulnerable points aren’t secured. Remember that you are always one distracted or careless employee away from being breached.