Cyber crime a constant threat to businesses

Cyber crime a constant threat to businesses

More damage is done to Irish businesses through day to day cyber crime then recent high-profile attacks, warns a Cork-based cyber security expert.

In the wake of ‘Petya’ a global cyber attack that hit several Irish firms this week, businesses should also be conscious of less high-profile attacks according to Robert McArdle, EMEA threat research lead with Trend Micro, a Cork-based global leader in IT security.

“I think Irish businesses needn’t worry about this kind of attacks as much as they should worry about the background noise of crime on the internet,” Mr McArdle said.

“High profile attacks do less damage than all the other day to day attacks that happen in the background,” he added.

Petya is the second high-profile attack to spread across systems in recent months, following ‘WannaCry’ a ransomware attack in May that disrupted banks, transport networks, hospitals and businesses across the world.

In Ireland, HSE systems were suspended for 48 hours to isolate itself against the attack after its system was infected.

Among companies affected by the Petya attack were the Irish operations of Danish shipping firm Maersk and pharmaceutical company MSD.

Petya was a more targeted attack then WannaCry according to Mr McArdle.

“This attack was a targeted piece of malware, particularly targeting places in the Ukraine. The few victims in Ireland more so people who would be caught up with those networks.” The attack highlights the importance of having patches in place as well as anti-virus software, according to Mr McArdle.

“It also highlights the importance of businesses having the right security plans in place should they be hit, such as security teams,” he added.

“But there was a better response to the attack this time, it's good to see people had learned and that there was a faster response.”

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