The biggest crime facing small businesses in Herts, Beds and Bucks is cybercrime – with 5 million cases reported nationally every year.
An estimated one in ten local people have fallen prey to internet fraudsters, according to Darren Billinghurst, Managing Director of local outsourced I.T support services company – Konnetix
During 2016 alone, cyber crime nationally cost businesses £29 billion.
“That’s an obscene amount of money,” said Mr Billinghurst, who has just written a new guide on the subject.
“The really scary thing is that data theft is now relatively easy for anyone to get involved in,” he said.
“Gone are the days of 1980s sci fi movies, where computer hackers were dark, mysterious and possessed high levels of intelligence. Today anyone with the inclination and £50 to spend can pick up a fairly powerful piece of software that will enable them to hack into computer systems and wreak havoc.”
Konnetix has revealed the four most common types of cyber scam:
• Exploit kits: These are thought to be responsible for the vast majority malware infections. These kits work on web servers, looking out for weaknesses and then running malicious code, which enables the hacker to have complete control of the system
• Crypto attacks: These prey on the uneducated by sending emails with attachments claiming to have come from a trusted source. They look like the real thing, but once you open the attachment malware will automatically be installed on your PC
• Phishing attacks: This is when groups of cyber criminals work together to steal your data and sell it on. Often finding their way onto your network through users clicking on bad links, they’ll steal your client data and send them emails pretending to be from you
• Malware: Specially created to cause mayhem, this is one of the nastiest forms of cyber crime out there. It’s often used by unscrupulous businesses who want to steal their competitors’ client data or simply send them spiraling into organisational chaos. They use fake advertising – AKA “malvertising” – to create interest, leading naïve users to click on dodgy links
Mr Billinghurst added: “It’s not all doom and gloom. It is entirely possible to keep your business and its people safe from cyber criminals. You have to take preventative action, and then fix problems as soon as they happen.”
Konnetix new guide on cyber crime can be downloaded free at https://www.konnetix.com/cybercrime-ebook