Idle Cyberthreats? Shhhh says AshleyMadison!

If you never took Cyberthreats seriously before, it’s probably time you join the rest of us on this ever-evolving digital playground called the Internet.
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dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.38;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"> Just ask the 37 million promiscuous members of the popular infidelity-focused matchmaking site, AshleyMadison, who had their information hacked and stolen from Avid Life Media(ALS).


The hacking group, calling themselves 'The Impact Team', posted a manifesto alongside the stolen data which stated that it had released the incriminating information in retaliation to the company's 'Full Delete' service that promises to remove a membership profile entirely for $19.


'The Impact Team' claims that this feature didn't erase profiles entirely as advertised and instead brought ALS an additional $1.7 million in revenue last year alone.


Needless to say, the attack on AshleyMadison is an eye-opener for the small to medium-sized business owner and it's time to re-evaluate how protected your organization is from data breaches and cyberthreats.


According to Businessnewsdaily, research has found that 75 percent of data breaches happen at small and medium-size businesses.


With companies being ever more reliant on technology, they are having a much harder time protecting themselves from data breaches due to social media, emails and malware attacks.


Data breaches are incidences in which sensitive, protected or confidential data has been stolen and potentially viewed, or used by unauthorized individuals. This could involve personal health information, personally identifiable information, trade secrets or intellectual property.


Here are 10 tips from the global security software company, McAfee, on how small business can minimize cybersecurity:


1.   Offer training for your employees: Organizations should train all their employees to use strong passwords and avoid dangerous links and emails.


2.   Be familiar with your data: Store sensitive data in a secure location. Make sure your employees know what confidential data is and where it is stored.


3.   Monitor your devices: Companies should keep track of all their devices used by employees.


4.   Network security: Utilize firewalls and private networks to secure sensitive information.


5.   Secure physical devices: Electronics should be secured and locked and offer limited access.


6.   Protect your website: Use trustmarks and strong anti-virus software on your website.


7.   Promote clear cybersecurity policies: Write a clear, well-planned policy outlining device use and disposal of secure information.


8.   Product disposal: Dispose of devices that are no longer used by wiping them clean of all information and physically shredding all paper documents.


9.   Keep your locations safe: Lock up and protect your offices and storage facilities.


10.  Screen employees: Screen employees appropriately before hiring them.