Regardless of the type of business, it's important to protect data from unauthorized access. There have been other high-profile data breaches in recent years, including those at Target and JP Morgan.
Because of this, many firms make significant investments in IT security. In addition to investing in the latest hardware, encryption, and anti-virus software, many organizations also closely monitor the physical hardware that stores their data. No matter how powerful a data security system is, the lawful, password-protected access points designed for authorized users will always be a weak point. Someone who has your login and password can log in and access all of your information and controls. Your business could suffer a significant financial loss as a result of this.
People tend to make certain pretty fundamental mistakes, which makes their passwords more vulnerable to attack despite this. It's important to know what these mistakes are in order to avoid them and improve your IT security:
Mistake #1: It is a mistake to use your personal information as a password.
An example from CNN's list of the most common password errors. A random string of alphanumeric characters can be difficult to remember, so most individuals choose a password that's easy to remember.
Someone might use their date of birth, social security number, or some other personal datum to create a password. Unfortunately, this results in a password that is exceedingly weak and easy to guess.
Such information is often divulged via a Facebook post or a loan application. Hackers will use this information to try and guess your passwords.
Mistake #2: Making the mistake of using simple sequences
When it comes to choosing passwords, the need to choose a simple and memorable one is the culprit. One of the most common examples is the following string of letters or numbers:
qwerty \s123456 \sabc123 \s0987654321
I could go on and on, but I'll stop here. Even while they're easy to recall without a hint, they're also quite easy to guess. In most cases, however, weak passwords will be rejected by corporate software.
Mistake #3:Password in PW Hint is a common mistake.
To help users remember what password they used, many password systems provide a hint option that provides a hint. You may be surprised to learn that some employees who have access to your computers will not only leave a hint but their complete password as well.
It is possible to prevent this by disabling hints, as well as by defining explicit criteria for password security.
Mistake #4: Sharing passwords
No matter how strong a password is, if the employee shares it with others, the strength of the password is lost.
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Information about an account can be compromised in a variety of ways. Remember that you're better off educating your employees on password security so they don't share them with others.
Failure #5: Failure to remove passwords of former employees from the system
Getting rid of an employee is a bother at best and a nightmare at worst. If an employee's employment with a company is ending, it's vital that their access to the system be canceled as soon as possible, regardless of the circumstances.
This is inappropriate, even if the individual was terminated peacefully. Risking their account information is simply not worth it.
The Consequences of Losing Your Password
All of the password problems described above put your organization in danger of a data breach if a hacker is able to crack your firm's system password and gain full user access.
Numerous variables can influence how much harm this causes, including:
The extent of the account's access.
How long before the breach is discovered.
The type of information that was retrieved.
whether or not the hacker uploads malware to further compromise your system.
Internal system security (firewalls, additional authentication tokens for access to your internal system security, For example, certain operating systems or antivirus software.
An example of the damage that can be caused by a data breach is the Target data breach, which occurred in 2013. "Hackers have obtained credit and debit card information for 40 million [Target] consumers," according to a New York Times piece from earlier this year... 70.5-110mn individuals were robbed of personal information, including email and mailing addresses. According to the story, the preliminary $10 million settlement was probably the least of the problems. damage to the company.
It wasn't just money or information that was lost here, but also consumer trust, which cost the company a lot of money in the year after the data breach, as shoppers boycotted the retailer. One Tech Crunch report states that "Target incurred $162 million in expenses between 2013 and 2014 due to the company's data breach."