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Cyber Security Challenges For Businesses

Combating cyber security challenges is all about staying ahead by taking preventive actions before any threats exploit the system. It is important as a cyber security threat can not only result in a reputational or monetary loss but also cause a complete financial bust after the business pays the penalty. In order to adopt proper preventive actions, it is important to understand the cyber security challenges that businesses face.

Here is a list of the biggest cybersecurity challenges for businesses:

  • Artificial Intelligence: Artificial intelligence plays a parallel role in cyber-attacks & their prevention. Research and modeling can be used to make AI systems learn to detect anomalies in the behavior pattern of events. AI systems can be used to create defensive tools such as biometric login. However, in a parallel scenario, the same characteristics of AI systems are exploited by hackers to execute a cyber attack.
  • Technical Skills Gap: There is a huge gap between the available cybersecurity professionals and the number of vacancies. This emphasizes on the marked inability to employ cybersecurity professionals at a speed that matches the rise of new vulnerabilities. As cyber-attack techniques have become more sophisticated, it has become imperative for organizations to hire employees with the right skill set. A simpler solution is to train existing staff according to the organization’s requirements to prevent cyber attacks and combat vulnerabilities. Additionally, companies heavily invest in making the system and network robust by implementing new advanced technologies, but effective implementation and use of these technologies require a skilled and trained workforce.
  • Cloud Risks: It has become a common practice for companies to move their sensitive data to cloud services. However, the effective movement of data to the cloud needs proper configuration & security measures. Organizations need to ensure the security of the platform along with the security of the organization’s data from theft & accidental deletion over the cloud. If not taken care of, cloud services can pose a major cyber security risk. In order to avoid these risks, organizations need to implement solutions such as firewalls, multi-factor authentication, Virtual Private Networks (VPN), etc.
  • Ransomware Threats: It is the most common type of cyber threat that is growing at a fast pace. Ransomware encrypts files or blocks access to the victim’s system or network. Once the access is blocked, the hackers demand ransom for re-allowing access. This can result in the loss of critical data, financial loss, and productivity loss.

For more information about cybersecurity solutions, contact Centex Technologies. You can call the following office locations – Killeen (254) 213 – 4740, Dallas (972) 375 – 9654, Atlanta (404) 994 – 5074, and Austin (512) 956 – 5454.

What Is Harly Trojan & How it Affects Android Users?

After Joker, there is a new addition in the line of Batman villain-themed malware, named “Harly”. Named after the fictional girlfriend (Harley Quinn) of “Joker” in the Batman series, this trojan can be defined as an auto-subscriber that works under the pretext of legitimate android apps.

To begin with, let us understand the basic difference between Joker & Harly Trojan.

  • Apps developed under the Joker series did not possess any malicious code. Instead, they worked by offering legitimate services to lure the target users into downloading the app from Google Play Store. Once the app was downloaded, it would download the malicious code on the victim’s phone. This code could send expensive SMS messages to premium rate numbers from the victim’s phone.
  • On the contrary, Harly is a step ahead. The apps contain the malicious code required to function and thus do not depend on remote CCS (control & Command Server). This makes Harly trojan difficult to detect.

The reach of Harly trojan can be estimated from the fact that over 190 apps in Google Play Store are infected by this trojan, and infected apps have been downloaded more than 4.8 million times.

How does Harly Trojan Work?

The functioning of Harly trojan can be understood as a step-wise process.

  • The trojan is distributed using android apps in Google Play Store.
  • Cybercriminals download legitimate apps available in the play store.
  • Malicious code is injected into the app code while retaining the original functioning of the app.
  • The altered app is uploaded to the play store under a different name.
  • When user downloads this app, the app decrypts the malicious code & launches it.

The purpose of the code is to gather information related to the target device, such as device configuration & network. Based on these details, the malicious code fetches a subscription list for the victim & signs him up for paid subscriptions.

Can Harly Sign Up The Victim For Subscriptions Bypassing SMS Or Call Verification?

A standard safety measure deployed while activating paid subscriptions is to send a verification code via SMS or over a phone call. But, Harly trojan is capable of bypassing this security measure.

To begin with, it disconnects the Wi-Fi on the mobile device & connects it to the internet using the mobile service provider’s network. Following this, it opens hidden windows to fetch user details for subscription. The trojan then gains access to the messages and intercepts the code sent for verification.

How to Stay Protected Against Harly Trojan?

A few preventive measures & diligences can help in avoiding falling prey to Harly trojan.

  • Thoroughly review the testimonials before downloading any app & avoid apps with negative feedback.
  • Avoid installing unnecessary apps on your mobile device.
  • Use open code apps as it allow users to inspect the code. Malware code hidden in the source code can be found easily.
  • Place a spending limit on your mobile phone & keep an eye on your subscriptions.

For more information about cybersecurity solutions, contact Centex Technologies. You can call at the following office locations – Killeen (254) 213 – 4740, Dallas (972) 375 – 9654, Atlanta (404) 994 – 5074, and Austin (512) 956 – 5454.

How to Train Employees on Cyber Security?

View PDF: How-to-Train-Employees-on-Cyber-Security

Importance of Software Updates for Cyber Security

A software patch or update is a program that a developer provides to either add functionality to the application or to correct any malfunctions, or potentially exploitable vulnerabilities discovered in the application. However, software updates are only effective if platform users participate in the upgrades. Users may still be at risk from potentially exploitable vulnerabilities if they have not upgraded their systems.

Why do people often either forget or ignore updating software?

The majority of people avoid updating their software for a variety of reasons, the most common being believing that their system does not require it since it is functioning well. Such users simply disregard update alerts or postpone them. However, by doing so, users fail to realize that they are significantly increasing the security risks for their devices. Users run a larger risk of experiencing a breach or attack the longer they wait to upgrade a system, app, software, platform, or device. Professionals have advised that software upgrades are important to protect the users’ devices from cyberattacks. Hence, users must update and upgrade when possible.

Why software updates are important?

  1. To avoid ransomware attacks and system compromises – Cybersecurity experts advise keeping all the endpoint devices always updated. An outdated application or a program on any device might be a lucrative way for a cybercriminal to access a user’s work files, emails, contacts, and sensitive financial information. This information can wind up being sold on the dark web, making it possible for other fraudsters to target the user in the future. Additionally, users can experience a ransomware attack that locks or encrypts all the data and demands money in return for decrypting the data. In many circumstances, users might never be able to retrieve their data from this catastrophe.
  2. To ensure the critical data, systems, and networks are secure – Attackers can target a system’s vulnerability to get access to other devices on a network. This usually occurs if a user uses the same login information across several other platforms. Malware is known to spread swiftly to other computers on the network once it has entered a device in the network. This makes it possible for a single unpatched device or a negligent user to destroy a whole network of systems.
  3. To install the latest version of the software – Software developers anticipate exploiting resolution mechanisms as they must always be on the lookout for vulnerabilities. When updates fail to get installed, there is an imminent danger that malware might infiltrate the system and steal data or take control of the system. Files might be encrypted, and the attacker could demand payment to decode the information. Although there are several reasons for software updates, the most important one is to patch existing security loopholes.
  4. To install add-ons and plugins that are compatible with the latest build of software – Software upgrades often install new functionality in the existing installed version while facilitating fixing the errors existing in the current version of the same software. Users fail to utilize these advancements when they decide not to install the most recent updates. Also, the productivity of the user might get impacted by using old software versions that might not support other applications that provide new functionalities.

Along with a host of other advantages, updating all of the deployed hardware, software, and other systems also guarantees that the security posture is working as expected. Updates can fix security flaws, get rid of glitches, and take away obsolete functionality. Software updates greatly reduce the chances of a cybercriminal infiltrating the network and stealing the data. Additionally, users are advised to update the software solutions to ensure the associated hardware is operating as effectively as possible.

Contact Centex Technologies to know how to safeguard your business’s computer network. You may reach Centex Technologies at Killeen (254) 213 – 4740, Dallas (972) 375 – 9654, Atlanta (404) 994 – 5074, and Austin (512) 956 – 5454.

Understanding Web Application Attacks

Web application threats are constantly on the rise. The sophistication and speed of web application cyberattacks can cause significant damage to businesses. In most cases, they result in further security breaches, which may have financial and legal consequences.

The most common reasons for web application attacks are incorrectly configured web servers, bad application architecture, and failure to check or sanitize form inputs. It is important to have a basic understanding of how these attacks work.

Here is a list of the most significant web application security issues:

Unwanted exposure of sensitive data

Sensitive information can be easily hacked if security measures like encryption at rest or in transit are not used during communication with the browser. Criminals can steal or manipulate information and commit cybercrimes like credit card fraud, identity theft, etc.

CSS or XSS (Cross Site Scripting)

CSS or XSS (Cross Site Scripting) security flaws aid attackers in running scripts in a user’s browser to damage websites, hijack user sessions or redirect users to other domains.

Software and integrity failures due to insecure deserialization

Deserialization issues frequently lead to remote code execution and provide hackers the ability to carry out a wide range of attacks.

XML external entities misconfiguration

Insecure XML processors expose users to the risk of unauthorized access to sensitive data, modification of existing data, and execution of malicious code. This vulnerability also allows Remote Code Execution, Denial of Service, and Server Side Request Forgery by cyber criminals.

Parameters and URL injections

An injection vulnerability, such as a SQL, OS or LDAP injection vulnerability, arises when an interpreter receives a command or query containing suspicious input. An attacker’s hostile data could lead the interpreter to access data without authorization or execute undesired commands. This could lead to the deletion of tables, unauthorized viewing of lists, and unauthorized access to the administration system.

Broken or insecure authentication

This occurs when application functionalities responsible for session management and authentication are incorrectly implemented. It lets attackers take over the identities of other users temporarily or permanently. It’s also easy for them to steal session tokens, passwords, or keys.

Use of software libraries and packages with security loopholes

A server takeover and significant data loss can result from an assault on weak software components. For example, an application may be using a weak or compromised version of the software framework or the libraries in application development, which may be exploited by attackers.

Inadequate security logging and monitoring

Inadequate recording, monitoring, and integration of event response can aid attackers in launching more attacks on systems. This allows attackers to further escalate their attacks.

Flawed access control restrictions

Access control lets you control which parts of a website and which application data different visitors can visit. If these restrictions are not correctly imposed, attackers can easily exploit these vulnerabilities to access restricted data.

Misconfigured security settings and features

It provides an easy entry point for attackers into the website and is one of the most severe web application security vulnerabilities. Attackers can use inadequate or ad hoc configurations, exposed cloud storage, verbose error messages containing sensitive data, and improper HTTP headers.

Organizations should follow secure coding standards to create robust and secure web applications. To create secure website applications contact Centex Technologies at Killeen (254) 213 – 4740, Dallas (972) 375 – 9654, Atlanta (404) 994 – 5074, and Austin (512) 956 – 5454.

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