Hauser Insurance Group Reports Increased Cyber Crime during Pandemic
Individuals and businesses have been aware of the risk of cyber attacks and online security threats for years. However, the recent COVID-19 pandemic underscored the vulnerability of online data with the sudden disruption in the economy and how companies conduct business. The leadership of Hauser Insurance Group hopes that American businesses learn from the pandemic that they must be prepared for anything and should take steps now to mitigate their risk by increasing data security.
How Much Does the Typical Data Breach Cost American Companies?
Hauser Insurance Group is a consulting company that helps businesses maximize the dollar value they receive from each insurance policy. The company offers employee benefits and risk management services in addition to insurance advice. One thing that has especially stood out for Hauser leadership in the past year is the increased risk of cyber threats and how they have evolved. As of late 2020, a single data breach costs businesses an average of $1 million dollars.
The Pandemic Made Things Easier for Cyber Criminals
The unknown nature of the threat of the pandemic forced millions of employees to become remote workers practically overnight. The large number of people working from home meant greater use of residential networks and personal devices. While necessary, the change provided cyber criminals with increased access to unprotected points where they could extract data for nefarious purposes.
Hauser Insurance Group points out the need for contactless deliveries and more people using the Internet while working or remaining at home due to the pandemic have also contributed to new security vulnerabilities. While the widespread impact of the coronavirus was devastating, business owners can feel grateful that it exposed the following:
- Inadequate information technology infrastructures
- Insufficient security controls
- Poor data governance
Knowing where the vulnerabilities lie is the first step to increasing cyber security. Unfortunately, that is small comfort for the thousands of victims of ransomware attacks in 2020. Attacks were up 40 percent over the first three quarters compared to the same timeframe in 2019. Hackers hit businesses on several levels, including automation, frequency, and targeting. Businesses within the United States suffered the most cyber attacks.
Small and Mid-Sized Businesses Are the Most Common Target
Online criminals go after smaller companies more frequently because they know these businesses do not always have the financial resources to implement strong security measures. That does not mean large corporations are immune from cyber attacks, especially as tactics to bypass security and extract data become more sophisticated.
Artificial intelligence is just one example of a tactic cyber criminals use to hack the computer systems of larger organizations. Unfortunately, technology has also enabled data thieves to infiltrate company backup systems and hold the data for ransom. Businesses end up in a position of having to pay millions of dollars or see decades worth of data disappear forever.
These reports may be discouraging, but threat and liability experts at Hauser Insurance Group states they do not have to be. Companies can take control back by having their systems scanned for the latest vulnerabilities and then implementing stronger measures against hackers.