For several days in April, credit card operations at one of South Korea’s banks were crippled by an attack on its servers that may have resulted in irreparable data loss, according to Seoul media reports. The fallout for Nonghyup Bank is ongoing, as consumer groups weigh class-action lawsuits, and a trial over the security breach plays out in South Korean courts.
For large enterprise observers the world over, recent high-profile breaches like those at Sony and Nonghyup are apt to encourage senior executives to reevaluate whether their risk-assessment plans are adequate.
“The threat landscape is constantly changing,” says Charisse Castagnoli, a midmarket security strategist at Dell. “The question is how to have pragmatic security and risk management, while protecting your critical assets appropriately.”
Companies often underestimate their risk levels and, therefore, don’t have appropriate plans, Castagnoli notes. Any company handling large amounts of money, personal identification data, or critical infrastructure should consider itself at high-risk. Castagnoli says some of the questions senior leadership should consider are:
- What makes my company attractive to political hackers and cybercriminals?
- To what extent are my customers dependent on my Website?
- How important to my business are my cyber-brand and cyber-reputation?
- Are my employees computing at-large well educated on best-practices to avoid malware?
Castagnoli underscores the importance of avoiding malware contamination because of the difficulty involved in detecting it after a breach. In the Nonghyup case, the laptop of a senior IBM contractor was breached in September. The malware went undetected until the April 12 attack.
“Many companies only filter network traffic from the outside-in. If you are a high-risk target, you have to also monitor from the inside-out. Additionally, consider what protection your users have when they leave the protected corporate domain, such as when users are on public WiFi or home networks.”
Castagnoli says partnering with solutions providers like Dell SecureWorks, which offers 24/7 monitoring capabilities and other IT asset protection services, can make it affordable to institute and manage comprehensive monitoring.