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SA firms taking a R36.5 million hit per data breach

Aug 8, 2018
SA firms taking a R36.5 million hit per data breach

While well-known insurance company Liberty continues to investigate the root cause of a recent data breach, the hack is a harsh reminder to all businesses that they need to prioritise cybersecurity and always remain vigilant.

This was the message from international data management SaaS company Redstor.

Breach possibly ransomware-related

With investigations ongoing, speculation is rife that the hack was a result of a type of ransomware that enables hackers to steal data from systems, added Redstor.

Cybercriminals have made attempts to extort funds from the company and threatened to leak their data.

From the 16th of June, Liberty were forced to begin the process of informing customers of the breach.

Share price falling

Redstor claims that some sources have stated that the hack came via an e-mail server and that that server was the source of the data that was extracted. With the dataset that was allegedly stolen thought to be 40 terabytes, however, it would seem that core systems may have also been compromised.

The company’s share price reportedly fell by four per cent after news of the breach was made public.

Clients losing faith

Redstor Product Management Director Danie Marais said that clients could well be concerned over how the hack originated, which could see them lose faith in the company.

Marais added that the firm will need to ascertain the origin of the breach, determine the damage’s full extent, and prepare to share its findings with regulators.

Ransomware still a major threat

Redstor claimed that the breach ranks among the major ransomware attacks and cyber attacks that have affected businesses in the past few years.

Ransomware and other malware, such as trojans and worms, remain a popular form of attack. There are preventative measures that can be carried out, however, including a backdoor protect service that intercepts malicious activity. Companies need to take more notice of these measures if they’re to halt the rising figure that cybercrime is costing their business.

Best practices

Source: Pixabay

Redstor cited South African company ViewFines as one of the more recent examples of businesses suffering the cost of a complacent attitude towards cyber security. The firm was scrutinized after data of almost one million individuals was leaked, including National identification numbers and addresses.

Even the Presidency’s website was defaced by hackers in July, although there was no report of a data leak.

Redstor recommends that all firms should consider employing best practices when it comes to data protection. Those that do will ensure that their cybersecurity has been optimised and that the business would be in a strong position to fend off an attack.

A mistake to pay ransom

The company advises those who have been a victim of a ransomware attack not to pay the fee.

The firm concluded that doing so is a viable method of regaining the data but that it isn’t recommended as there is no guarantee that the data will be returned in its original format, and that the cybercriminals involved may target them again, knowing that they’re vulnerable.

Main image: Source: Pixabay