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How to protect your business from zero-day threats

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Are you worried about cyber threats to your business and so-called zero-day threats? Or do you believe that only global brands are affected by these vulnerabilities? In this blog, we’ll take a look at why all businesses should be aware of zero-day security flaws and understand the measures they can put in place to help reduce the risks.

What are zero-day vulnerabilities?

Essentially, a zero-day vulnerability is a flaw in software or hardware that the provider is unaware of. When these flaws are discovered the race begins to stop them being exploited before the provider is able to create a patch. There are many ways that these flaws can be used by hackers to gain access to websites, computers, phones and servers which include:

  • Spyware – A common way that hackers will use flaws is to install spyware or malware that tracts information, this can include customer information, payment details and much more.
  • Ransomware – Similar to spyware, ransomware is a form of malware which causes serious issues for business as it locks and encrypts critical files with the goal of extorting payments for these files to be unlocked.
  • Website malware – This can cause a massive loss in trust as visitors to your website may be affected by malware on your website causing loss of data and potential payment information.

How cybercrime affects UK businesses?

According to the FCA, there has been a 1200% increase in cyber attacks on financial firms in the past year and the number of attacks is increasing year-on-year. And, while larger firms are the ones who are targeted the most, you shouldn’t rule out the possibility of an attack on your business. Data breaches and the loss of customer data could lead to your business being subjected to enormous fines under GDPR regulation. The reality of zero-day threats is that your business can’t afford to ignore them.

What you can do to help protect your business

As with most IT security, prevention is better than cure so these are the measures you can take to help protect your business. And, while the below solutions won’t prevent every attack, they should make your business a much harder target.

Firewalls and antivirus software – A good firewall and up to date virus protection won’t stop zero-day attacks but it will make them much more detectable and help provide your business with basic protection.

Website and email scanning – Malware is normally spread by email phishing or scam websites so having software in place that actively scans for malware can help stop these types of breaches.

Monitoring and management – From your servers and infrastructure to local files and your network, proactive monitoring can help to prevent intruders on your network.

Training – For most businesses, the largest vulnerabilities are caused by employees falling foul of phishing attacks, scam websites or other targeted cyber-attacks. Training of employees can help to ensure that your business is fully protected.

Disaster recovery – How would your business cope in the event of a data breach? Do you have disaster recovery processes in place? Your disaster recovery solution needs to be tested on a regular basis to make sure that it works as expected.

Third-party help – For the majority of businesses, IT security is a specialist area that involves additional help and support in order to have it implemented. At Plexus Business Solutions we can help provide you with a professional service and all the support you need.