In the digital age we are in, it is essential to protect all the data we have, whether it is our own data or from the users who provided it. No user without permission should have a chance to access sensitive information.
According to Trend Micro’s annual cybersecurity report – A Constant State of Flux -, in 2020, more than 1453 vulnerabilities were identified – that’s just the number of warnings published ⎼, 173 of which consisting of critical severity and 983 of high severity.
Vulnerabilities like these are an open door for cyberattacks to happen. But let’s better understand what they are and how privileged access management prevents cyberattacks.
What are cyberattacks?
Cyberattacks are basically attacks by hackers on a specific computer, system, or computer network.
The goals of an attack like this can vary widely: they range from stealing user data, making modifications to systems, or even bringing down an entire network.
This type of crime can be associated with the category of extortion, considering that it is quite common for hackers to charge an amount of money for the attack to stop, so that important information is not leaked or any other aspect that may be extremely important for the victim.
Perhaps it may seem like something that does not happen very often, given the apparent difficulty of invasion, but Brazil alone has suffered more than 8.4 billion cyberattack attempts in 2020. This shows us that it is essential to always be aware of our system’s flaws and gives us an idea of the size of the risk we are facing.
How do hackers manage to break into systems?
There are several ways to break into a system, and with each passing day, criminals invent new ways to do this. Among them, we can mention:
The term ransomware is a fusion of the terms ransom, which is exactly what it means, and malware, a term referring to malicious software.
It is basically malware that blocks a series of files or an entire system, from which a ransom is charged for their release. It is literally a virtual kidnapping.
Ransomware can gain access to the system in different ways: via email links, social media links, websites, or by installing apps. Once inside, the virus encrypts the data, preventing the user from gaining access.
Generally, the ransom is charged in cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin. This is due to the virtually zero chance of tracking it, making it almost impossible to identify the criminal.
This is used as spy malware. It is quite difficult to detect as it works in the background.
It is widely used for stealing confidential information such as passwords, banking, credit card, or any other information that is useful for criminals.
They usually have access by downloading free files or programs from the Internet.
Malware like this has the function of recording everything that is being typed on a keyboard. It is a type of spyware, that is, they are occasionally used in so-called phishing attacks, those designed for identity theft.
A Keylogger can also be hardware, such as a USB cable or a flash drive.
Also known as distributed network attacks or distributed denial-of-service attacks. DDoS attacks work by making a large number of requests to an online service to exceed the system’s capacity, preventing it from functioning properly.
They usually do this intending to request an amount to stop the attack. For this to happen, the hacker uses a series of infected computers; the network that these computers are part of is called a zombie network.
What characterizes privileged access?
As its name suggests, users who have this type of access have privileged accounts to access sensitive administrative information. They can change passwords, view user data, modify settings, and perform other related actions.
In general, users like this have accounts with very complex passwords and, in many cases, these accounts are shared among several administrators. But that alone is not enough. It is necessary to closely monitor each credential, especially those that are common among several people.
How does privileged access management prevent cyberattacks?
Privileged Access Management (PAM) is here precisely to help organizations to implement control of privileged actions efficiently.
Users who have this type of access are constantly accessing critical organization resources. Monitoring who joins the system, when that person logs in, and also if they are performing the activities assigned to them is of utmost importance.
A PAM solution is used for this very purpose. Thus, one can guarantee the user is really the one with the authorization, not a hacker who got someone’s credential information.
The solution does this by forcing the person to request a just-in-time authorization, limiting the space they have to work with and also setting a sufficient time limit to perform the required task.
This way, there is no unnecessary exposure of information, ensuring greater security and exponentially reducing the loopholes for hackers to work.
A PAM system can go further and block the user if they are performing unauthorized tasks, which is great for reducing the chances of falling victim to a cyberattack.
It is important to mention that no solution is 100% effective, but the more barriers there are between people and data, the lower the risks.
As we have seen, hackers have a variety of ways to perform their activities. When we talk about users with privileged access, we are dealing with a huge risk for the organization. A hacker can simply steal someone’s authorized credential and use it to break into the administrative system.
A PAM system is essential to put another virtual barrier, reducing the number of loopholes and considerably reducing the vulnerability of a system.
senhasegura is a PAM solution that allows and helps you to secure and protect your data. You can request a demo and learn more about the quality of the service provided. Do not waste time and do not be one more person in the victim statistics!
About Version 2 Limited
Version 2 Limited is one of the most dynamic IT companies in Asia. The company develops and distributes IT products for Internet and IP-based networks, including communication systems, Internet software, security, network, and media products. Through an extensive network of channels, point of sales, resellers, and partnership companies, Version 2 Limited offers quality products and services which are highly acclaimed in the market. Its customers cover a wide spectrum which include Global 1000 enterprises, regional listed companies, public utilities, Government, a vast number of successful SMEs, and consumers in various Asian cities.
Senhasegura strive to ensure the sovereignty of companies over actions and privileged information. To this end, we work against data theft through traceability of administrator actions on networks, servers, databases and a multitude of devices. In addition, we pursue compliance with auditing requirements and the most demanding standards, including PCI DSS, Sarbanes-Oxley, ISO 27001 and HIPAA.