Top 8 IT Security Threats Revealed

2 Minutes Read

Here is a quick reference list of the top 8 threats to your organization's IT policy. 


1. Weak Security Policies

Having unlocked or easily unlockable devices are easy targets for this kind of threat, and even less than sophisticated hackers can take advantage of any weak company passwords. Organizations that fall prey generally have no password change policies in place, don't require automatic device locking after inactivity or have poor access control policies in place.


2. Web Browser Extensions

Although most appear to be benign, some web browser extensions have been compromised by cybercriminals in their attempt to gain access to the sensitive data of users, including web history, cookies, and even saved passwords. 


3. Public WI-FI

Public wifi networks are a common avenue that hackers use when attempting "Man-in-the-Middle" cyber attacks, which allow intercepting your data flowing through the public wi-fi connection. This is primarily a concern for employees that work remotely, as these workers often utilize cafes and other public locations for free wi-fi. 


4. Phishing

Phishing attacks are a form of social engineering that occurs when a cybercriminal attempts to trick you or your employees into giving up your private information via email, phone, in person, and even through SMS texting. They pose as a legitimate brand or person that asks for private information. 


5. Malware

Malware is among the most popular and common threats to your business network. Defined simply, malware is software, programs, or files deliberately placed on your network to steal data.

They go by many names, including trojan horses, viruses, spyware, etc. You may also encounter malware in the form of a Backdoor Attack, which refers to any method that bypasses standard security measures to gain access to your company's network, software applications, or computer systems. 


6. Ransomware Email

Ransomware is a type of malware that, once downloaded, immediately encrypts and prevents you from accessing your company's systems and data until you pay a ransom. 

Most come via suspicious emails that trick you into clicking links or downloading malware disguised as a regular attachment. You can also encounter them on questionable sites. Failing to properly update your browser, operating system, or installed software may also leave your business vulnerable to ransomware attacks. Remember that even after payment, there is no guarantee that the criminal will give you access to your captured data. 


7. Your Employees

Unfortunately, the biggest security threat to your business is probably your employees. 

For instance, the victims of phishing attacks are typically employees who were duped into clicking a suspicious link in an email. Security breaches caused by employees are not always accidental. Sometimes, employees are given a greater level of access to your systems than necessary, enabling them to abuse access privileges for personal gain.  The simplest way to mitigate this issue is to set intelligent policies regarding employee data privileges and routinely educate your workforce on avoiding phishing attacks. 


8. Unpatched Software & Hardware Vulnerabilities

As technology changes and ages, hackers eventually learn how to bypass old hardware and software security measures. 

Because there are so many cybercriminals looking to exploit outdated security systems, one of the riskiest things your company can do is to dismiss the updates that pop up on your business devices and applications.  Although it may be tempting to postpone an update to save an extra 5-10 minutes of your workday, doing so puts your company's security at risk.

The best way to counter this risk is to maintain regular update schedules and have your IT team ensure that the latest security patches are being applied to company systems. 

With everything that needs to be done, from the security audits to policy implementation, it can feel like one too many things to deal with on top of standard business operations. Spend less time worrying about your security and more time running your business by taking advantage of our Managed Security Services, which come with preventative IT Security measures on top of our advanced threat detection and remediation solutions.