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Spooky software: The latest cyber threats to fear this Halloween

Protect your business by defending against the latest data security threats.

Protect your business by defending against the latest data security threats.

Forget Michael Myers – the scariest thing facing businesses this Halloween is the risk presented by the latest and most dangerous cyber security threats.

The cyber security world moves fast as experts try to stay one step ahead of data thieves and other malicious actors. Every year, new malware, exploits and other threats surface to put company data squarely in the crosshairs. Remember: No business is too small to fly under the radar, so be sure to take steps to avoid falling victim to the worst cyber security threats this season.

Botnets get a new mission

Botnets have been around for years, with unwitting victims becoming ensnared in broader schemes to carry out distributed denial-of-service attacks and other criminal activities. Once a cyber criminal compromises a machine, that device can then be added to a larger botnet that may number in the hundreds of thousands.

"No threat ever truly disappears."

There have been variations over the years, with cyber criminals taking advantage of Internet-of-Things devices to build out their botnet ranks. In fact, the infamous Mirai botnet that brought down one of the world's largest DNS providers in 2016 included numerous IP security cameras and other connected devices.

The 2018 spin on botnets involves cryptomining, where criminals attempt to use their raw processing power to steal cryptocurrency like Bitcoin. The one constant in cyber security is that no threat ever truly disappears. It evolves, incorporates new technologies and reemerges more harmful than ever before.

Cyber criminals never take a holiday.
Cyber criminals never take a holiday.

GDPR presents compliance challenges

Although the EU's General Data Protection Regulation isn't a cyber security threat, exactly, it does present a tremendous data privacy challenge for businesses all across the globe. GDPR launched this past May, bringing into effect a lengthy list of rules and guidelines that companies must adhere to in order to access, store or process EU consumer data. This means even companies located in the U.S. are affected by GDPR if they have customers in Europe.

GDPR includes a number of requirements that are far more comprehensive and limiting than any other data security and privacy regulations. For instance, user consent forms need to be much more explicit before companies can gather customer data for marketing or engagement purposes. Consumers can also opt out of these agreements at any time and have their personally identifiable information removed completely.

Fully complying with GDPR requires some fairly significant overhauls in both IT systems and internal processes, making it difficult to achieve. Working with an expert managed IT services provider can help address any compliance or security needs, and keep your sensitive data and critical systems safe. For the best managed IT services NYC has to offer, contact TEKConn today.