Up until the last 5 years or so, IT security providers focused on building strong “castle walls” designed to keep the bad guys out of the castle. We used tools like firewalls, anti-virus, and other technologies to make this happen.
But the problem is that, in recent years, the bad guys have gotten better and better at breaking through these defenses. They use tactics like phishing and social engineering that are impossible to completely defend against – because they take advantage of human error, which we can never 100% eliminate, no matter how hard we try.
We refer to these attackers as “silent bad actors” – these are bad guys who have broken through your castle walls and are now inside your business. Once they’re inside, assuming they’re not detected, they can cause massive problems. We’ve seen silent bad actors attempt to disable backup software, then steal data – hoping that their victims will be forced to pay a ransom to get their data back, since their backups aren’t accessible either. We’ve seen them attempt to steal sensitive customer data and hold it hostage. We’ve seen big organizations and major corporations fall prey in recent years – most everyone in Charlotte will remember last summer’s Colonial Pipeline attack which caused a brief panic and a gas shortage across the east coast.
Building strong castle walls isn’t enough anymore. The silent bad actor represents a serious threat. And it’s critical that your business – with the support of your IT partner – has tools in place to mitigate the threat.
At Proactive, we’ve implemented new technologies – including what’s called a Security Operations Center – on behalf of our clients, which allows us to monitor activity 24/7 and quickly identify signs that a silent bad actor has slipped past the castle walls. Once identified, we’re able to kick the bad guy out before they have the opportunity to cause any damage.
Friends, I’d encourage you to take a moment right now and ask your IT team what measures they have in place to identify silent bad actors who may slip through your defenses.
It’s critical that your cyber security defenses go beyond just building castle walls. Castle walls are important, but they’re not impenetrable. Sooner or later, a bad guy is likely to find their way through. When they do, will you be able to detect them immediately and remove them, before the damage is done? Or will you become yet another statistic in the growing count of businesses that have fallen prey?
As always, I’m here to help. If you’d like to have a conversation about cybersecurity in your business, please reach out to us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or 704-464-3075 extension 3.
Dedicated to IT security and productivity,
About Steve Kennen
As an expert in information technology infrastructure management, cybersecurity, and cyber risk management practices for small businesses, Steve spearheads initiatives that keep his clients secure and their business operations running smoothly. His core message is that the details matter.