January 23, 2016

Cyber extortion is a relatively common online crime wherein a hacker demands money to stop or prevent attack on an organization’s website, computer systems/servers or internet network. Since a large number of businesses depend upon internet, cyber extortion has become an increasingly common cybercrime. Most cyber extortionists use malware laden email attachments or spam URLs to infect the target computer systems.

Types Of Cyber Extortion Attacks:

  • Ransomware: This is the most common cyber extortion attack that involves the use of a ransomware to infect an individual’s computer, steal confidential information or encrypt the stored data. The victim needs to pay a certain sum of money in order to retrieve the files. Examples of ransomware Trojans include CryptoLocker, CryptorBit, CryptoWall and CryptoDefense.
  • Denial Of Service: A denial of service attack occurs when a business’ internal network is flooded with unauthenticated traffic that it denies access to the legitimate users. The company’s website may even be shut down for an indefinite period of time. This type of attack primarily targets start-up businesses as they do not have the sophisticated IT infrastructure and security software.
  • Hijacked Accounts: Online account breaches can be quite serious, particularly if they involve financial or social accounts. Cyber criminals are specifically targeting social media accounts as they are not fully protected by the users. In these attacks, the hacker may threaten the victim to erase, alter or leak out the sensitive information until the extortion amount is not paid off.

Tips To Safeguard Your Business Against Cyber Extortion

  • Know Your Data: Understand the type of data your company needs to store and what risks are involved with it. Depending upon the nature and the amount of sensitive information, you should implement cybersecurity practices in your organization.
  • Set Limits: Restrict the administrative privileges for computer systems and corporate network. Limit the number of employees who can access or use the computers containing all the important information.
  • Enforce Strict Password Policies: Educate employees about the importance of creating strong and lengthy passwords for their online accounts. Also, a single password should never be used for more than one account. You can further increase password security by implementing two-factor authentication, wherever applicable.

We, at Centex Technologies, can help you to prevent cyber extortion attacks in your organization. For more information, you can call us at (855) 375 – 9654.