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Catching the Cybersecurity Wave

A few months ago I attended a security event in Atlanta that was primarily focused on cybersecurity and learned a number of things to share.

At the GC&E Systems Group event in Atlanta, the conversation was about cybersecurity because the network is involved. Just in case you are not familiar with GC&E, they are a Georgia-based company that specializes in integrated security solutions, integrated electronic security solutions and telecommunications consulting. They also play in the IT world, hence the topic for the one-day conference.

John Gomez, the CEO of Sensato Cybersecurity Solutions, talked about the state of cybersecurity. He said 67 percent of all employees leaving a job steal information on the way out the door. Even more noteworthy, 80 percent of banks fail to catch fraud.

The real stunning number is that it takes businesses as much as 265 days to detect a network breach.

Kenrick Bagnall, a deputy constable and police investigator with the Toronto Police Department, offered the anatomy of a cyberattack, beginning with a risk assessment. Among the threat considerations, managers must understand system susceptibility.

“When a small or medium-sized business is attacked, 60 percent of those firms will go out of business within six months,” Bagnall said. “An attack on a smaller business has huge collateral damage. The weakest link in all this is the human factor.”

Organizations are too afraid about reporting cybercrime to police, Bagnall said, which impairs law enforcement’s ability to go after criminals.

“Corporations are concerned about their reputation, their stock price and share valuation, and these are the things that prevent them from coming to law enforcement early in the process,” Bagnell said. “The sooner an individual or a corporation comes to law enforcement it increases the chances of a positive result tremendously.”

So, what are the next generation strategies to fight cyber warfare? Darnell Washington, president and CEO of SecureXperts, told the audience at the GC&E Converged Security Summit that 80 percent of federal agencies has reported successful breaches in the last five years. Even 40 percent of commercial intrusions went undetected for at least four months.

“Unfortunately, most people are comfortable trading some security for convenience of running their lives,” Washington said. “Top of the list of things to do; change passwords every time an employee leaves your firm.”

Something very important to keep top of mind: Washington regularly advises the security community at large on insider threat management, such as using structured and independent verification using next generation adaptive methodologies and strategies to identify and mitigate human and environmental threats to information and communication systems.

This article originally appeared in the June 2018 issue of Security Today.

About the Author

Ralph C. Jensen is editor-in-chief of Security Today magazine.

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