Archive for October, 2020

Understanding The Concept Of Ransomware As A Service

Ransomware is a type of malware that extorts money from the target victim by infecting and taking control of the victim’s systems or secured documents stored in the system. Ransomware attacks either locks the computer from normal use or encrypts the documents using a key available with the attacker only.  ‘Ransomware as a Service’ is a kind of ‘Software as a Service’ provided by tech vendor. RaaS can also be defined as a ransomware infrastructure that is rented to hackers on dark web. It is an easy platform for novice hackers (with zero to low knowledge of coding malware) to access ransomware attacks and implant these ransomwares on victim’s machines for claiming extortion money.

How Does RaaS Function?

Here is a simple map of events to explain the functioning of RaaS model:

  • A deceitful vendor offers a tool containing Ransomware on Dark web
  • The package contains all the software and related files needed for a successful ransomware attack
  • Hackers and malicious actors purchase this tool package
  • They use the tools for attacking a victim’s system or network to get hold of computer files and information
  • Depending upon the type of ransomware, it may either lock or encrypt the files
  • The hackers now demand financial ransom in exchange of returning data access to the victim

Similar to other ‘Software as a Service’ models, RaaS involves user services such as provision of desktop, infrastructure, ERP, customer relationship management or other digital services. The buyers of RaaS have the option to order up the capability of the ransomware for launching a more severe attack.

Some important points to note include:

  • RaaS users take deliberate steps to conceal their identity and take deliberate steps to make their actions hard to track. A common practice is to demand payments in digital currency as it is comparatively difficult to trace.
  • Once the victim makes the ransom payment, it is not guaranteed that the hacker will provide the decryption key to the victim. Also, making the ransom payment does not ensure that the hacker will not leak any files or documents.

What Measures Can Be Taken To Combat RaaS Attacks?

Organizations need to take following measures to secure themselves against RaaS attacks:

  • Employees are the most vulnerable entry point but they may be used as first line of defense, if properly educated. Regularly educate them on the latest ransomware attacks and cyber security practices they should employ.
  • Secure the system and network by continuously auditing for any vulnerability. Also, regularly update the cyber security tools for latest versions.
  • Maintain a backup of all the files at a location from where they can be easily retrieved. This helps the business to keep functioning even if the systems are attacked.

For more information on understanding the concept of ‘Ransomware as a Service’, contact Centex Technologies at (254) 213 – 4740.

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Tips To Reduce Cyber Crime In Inbound Call Centers

Business security is one of the prime priorities for every business and as the number of cyber attacks is on a rise, the cyber security practices have become a necessity. Cyber criminals tend to find weak entry spots for targeting a business. Due to the nature of operations, inbound call centers act as an easy target for cyber criminals. The inbound call centers receive customer calls and acquire customer information to answer their queries. If hackers breech the inbound call system, they can get hold of consumer’s personal information.

Thus, businesses need to be vigilant and take proper steps to secure consumer information. Here are some tips to reduce cyber crime in inbound call centers:

  • Regularly Audit The Environment: Audits are generally overlooked, but regularly auditing the network environment of the call center can help in detecting any intrusion at an early stage. Audits can also help businesses in detecting any vulnerability in the system. A simpler way is to automate the network audit using a remote monitoring and management system (RMM). Also, businesses should consider password audit for all the staff in the inbound call center. This helps in tracking the users with weak or outdated password.
  • Strengthen The Authentication Process: Passwords alone may not be sufficient for proper authentication of users. So, inbound call centers should strengthen the system by incorporating multi-factor authentication.  Also, it is important to backup the authentication data with either a knowledge based, possession based, or inherence based requirement such as having a physical key or smartphone for receiving one-time password.
  • Boost Weak Security Through Automation: A great approach to ensure security of the systems is to automate the security process. A common example is to automate password generation such that the users themselves don’t know their passwords until the time of login. This eliminates the risk of knowingly or unknowingly leak of passwords by the users. This can be achieved by using software such as Password Management System or privileged Identity Management.
  • Secure The Endpoints: Endpoints are highly vulnerable because cyber criminals attack these endpoints to create holes in the network security perimeter. Inbound call centers can use advanced endpoint detection solutions to improve system’s ability to defend itself.

For more information on tips to secure network in inbound call centers, contact Centex Technologies at (254) 213 – 4740.

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Tips To Mitigate Email Phishing Attacks

PDF Version: Tips-To-Mitigate-Email-Phishing-Attacks

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Most Dangerous Virus & Malware Threats Of 2020

Cyber criminals keep on evolving virus and malware to make them advanced and more dangerous. This allows them to target new vulnerabilities and operating system versions. To keep the business network secure, it is important for businesses to have in-depth information about new virus and malware. This knowledge comes handy in creating strategies to protect the systems against these virus & malware.

So, here is a list of most dangerous virus & malware threats of 2020 to help businesses understand and strategize against these cyber attacks:

  • Clop Ransomware: Clop is a variant of CryptoMix ransomware that targets Windows users. Clop ransomware blocks the Windows processes and disables multiple Windows applications including Windows Defender and Microsoft Security Essentials. Once these applications are blocked, the ransomware encrypts the data files on the target system and demands ransom in exchange of decryption key.
  • Fake Windows Update (Hidden Ransomware): Cyber criminals have been taking advantage of the need for installing latest Windows updates. The latest ransomware makes use of phishing email that instructs users to install urgent Windows update. The email contains ransomware ‘.exe’ files that are disguised as Windows update link. The ransomware, known as ‘Cyborg’, encrypts all the files and programs and demands a ransom payment for decrypting the files.
  • Zeus Gameover: It is a part of Zeus family of malware and viruses. The piece of malware is a Trojan that accesses sensitive bank account details to steal the funds. This variant of Zeus family does not require a centralized “Command & Control” server. It can actually bypass centralized servers and create independent servers to send sensitive information.
  • RaaS: It is also known as “Ransomware as a Service” is a growing industry. People can hire a hacker or team of hackers to perform the attack for them. These services can be used by people with zero prior knowledge of coding to carry out dangerous cyber attacks.
  • Fleeceware: It is a type of malware that continues to charge large amounts of money to app users, even after they have deleted their accounts from the app. Although, this malware doesn’t infect or encrypt any user files, it is still a shady practice used by app developers wanting to cash on unsuspecting users.

For more information on latest cybersecurity techniques, contact Centex Technologies at (254) 213 – 4740.

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