In our increasingly digital world, cybersecurity has become a crucial concern for individuals and organizations alike. While most people are aware of the importance of protecting their digital assets, there are still many misconceptions and myths surrounding cybersecurity. These myths can lead to a false sense of security and make individuals and businesses vulnerable to cyberattacks. In this blog post, we will explore 10 of the most common cybersecurity myths and debunk them to help you better understand the realities of staying safe in the digital age.
Myth #1: "My company is too small to be targeted by hackers."
Many small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) erroneously believe they are too small to be targeted by hackers. SMBs often lack the resources and expertise to adequately protect themselves, making them an attractive target for cybercriminals. In fact, according to the National Cyber Security Alliance, 43% of cyberattacks target small businesses.
Myth #2: "Antivirus software alone can protect me from all threats."
While antivirus software is valuable in protecting against viruses and other malicious software, it is not enough. Antivirus software can detect and remove known threats. However, they cannot handle more sophisticated attacks like phishing scams, social engineering, and zero-day exploits. Companies need to adopt a comprehensive security approach, including firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and employee training.
Myth #3: "Using a strong password is enough to protect my accounts."
While a strong password is vital in protecting your accounts, it is not enough. Passwords can be easily compromised through phishing scams, social engineering, and brute-force attacks. Employers should strongly consider multi-factor authentication, which provides an additional layer of protection for accounts and motivates employees to employ distinct passwords with a password manager.
Myth #4: "Backups are not necessary. We can always restore from the cloud."
Cloud backups can be vulnerable to cyberattacks, and restoring data from the cloud takes time and resources. Many cloud providers don't guarantee data safety or utilize a shared responsibility model. Businesses must understand the shared responsibility model. Companies should implement regular backups, both on-premises and in the cloud, and regularly test their process to ensure that they can quickly and effectively restore their data.
Myth #5: "Being compliant is enough."
Companies often believe that ticking all the compliance boxes will make them secure. But it is not so. While compliance ensures you meet the minimum-security standards, an individualized strategy is essential to defend your data against advanced security threats. Companies should look beyond compliance and develop a comprehensive security program that includes regular employee training, access control policies, strong passwords, and risk assessment.
Myth 6# “Encrypting data is enough to protect sensitive data."
Cryptography often gives a false sense of security. However, as cyberattacks become increasingly sophisticated, it is crucial not wholly to rely on just encryption. Diversifying key storage, using the Zero-Trust model, one-way hash functions, and more are also essential.
Myth #7: Only the IT team is responsible for security.
IT teams are equipped to create the security infrastructure, identify the risk, and minimize the damage. However, cybersecurity isn't the IT team's responsibility alone. The success of cybersecurity processes and policies depends on all stakeholders. Thus, regular security training for employees across all levels becomes even more crucial.
Myth #8: Only external sources can pose security threats.
Not all cyber threats come from external sources. Security breaches can often happen due to an ignorant user, unnecessary accesses, employees clicking on phishing links, and more. Data suggests that 43% of all violations are insider threats, either intentional or unintentional. Thus, it is essential to conduct periodic cybersecurity training for your employees.
Myth 9: "We only need to worry about the popular cyber threats."
While staying informed about the latest threats is important, organizations should recognize older, well-known threats such as malware and unpatched software. These threats can still cause significant harm. Companies should take steps to mitigate them, even if they are less advertised than the most recent threats.
Myth #10: "Cybersecurity is too expensive for our company."
While implementing a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy can be costly, the cost of a cyberattack is even higher. On average, the cost of a data breach in 2022 is $4.35M. Not only will a successful attack cause a financial loss, but it can also result in the loss of sensitive information and harm the company's reputation. Reports suggest cybercrime will cost companies an estimated $10.5 trillion annually by 2025. Cybersecurity needs to be viewed as more of an investment rather than a cost.
Cybersecurity continues to be one of the top challenges today. The current economic and geopolitical landscape, hybrid work model, and technological advances further escalate cybersecurity threats as cybercriminals use increasingly sophisticated ways to breach data. The best defence against these threats is knowledge and having an actionable security plan in place.
At Packetlabs, we offer many services to help you strengthen your security posture including a comprehensive Security Maturity assessment to help provides a health check that evaluates the security within your business and ultimately provide a security road map.
Contact the Packetlabs team to learn more or get a quote!