cyber threat, cyber security, hacking, cyber security
An email offers no tamper-proof defence against cyber menace. Image Credit: Pixabay

One of the most encouraging shifts in the habits of professionals during the pandemic has been the swift response and adaptability to handle work remotely. From government offices and hospitals to schools and private enterprises, the pandemic increased the overall use of digital channels, accelerating transactions and customer engagement.

As companies continue their growth, they seek to extend their reach from websites to social media to more digital ways, which means meeting new demands. In turn, the ha’ve had to quickly scale these platforms - but security has yet to catch up.

The reliance on innovative technology creates newer vulnerabilities within the digital transformation. Where communication via email is compulsory in a corporate setting, IT teams have to consider end-to-end security. The Trend Micro Security Round-up 2020 report revealed that more than 269 million cyberattacks were detected and blocked by its solutions in the MENA region, of which 227 million were email-borne, 31 million were URL attacks, 9.6 million were malware attacks.

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Gaps galore

Also, as per the Osterman Research study, email is a favored target for bad actors to penetrate enterprise networks, out of the 17 different types of security incidents, Among the respondents, 84 per cent highlighted phishing and ransomware were the most prevalent, 47 per cent had accounts compromised, 49 per cent were affected by phishing messages turned malware infection, and 53 per cent were impacted by business email compromise attacks.

Phishing and ransomware have been the two main culprits during the pandemic and continue to be so. Within those operational emails, the two have led to both data loss and crippling IT service outages. As per the report, 65 per cent of phishing attempts were found in user inboxes; 65 per cent of users clicked on phishing links or attachments; and 61 per cent flagged data theft from ransomware actors.

Mount the defence

This result is a forecast or warning of how things will only intensify in the time to come. These circumstances require a robust set of solutions that organizations will have to put into practice for mitigating cyber risks.

With technologies like XDR (Extended Detection and Response), combining endpoint, network, and email for threat detection and response, organizations will have the visibility to not only better protect, but also find the root cause of each compromise. But there needs to be a unified people, technology, and process stance, which includes dedicated user training, full utilization of XDR, and response to threats in the earliest stages.

Adoption of solutions like the XDR is indispensable for the enterprise fraternity as they are accommodating increasing customer needs and simultaneously improvising their IT infrastructure to be able to sustain the overall demand of high performance due to digitization. The more they adapt to the digital world the greater will be the need for them to safeguard themselves against threats.

Strengthening the lines between people and processes through a multi-layered defence plan will keep both the pressure and threats at bay.