Phishing in Your Own Waters

If you own a small business or professional services firm, you depend on your employees to have enough tech savvy and common sense to avoid links in email messages or on websites that open your system to bad actors. No matter how much you trust them, you need to verify they’re doing the right thing. You can test your human security defenses by using your own phishing expedition to see how they’re doing.

We’ve become acquainted with independent cybersecurity firms by attending conferences over the years. We learn a lot from our peers and presenters – such as it takes an average of 244 days to detect a system breach and that using the cloud will be a necessity by 2028. We’ve also emphasized the need to have a thorough security audit, but as an IT firm, there’s only so much we can do. We also think that an IT firm is not the best organization to really get into the granular details of your security because we all have a vested interest in finding problems to fix.

An independent security expert can find the smallest breach openings in your system and tell you what needs to be done. One of the most fascinating tools they use is a phishing campaign aimed at everyone who works in your organization. They can plant fake links and QR codes and any other tool that a hacker can use to get someone to open a window into your system. They also have tools to mimic the follow-up methods that hackers use once somebody makes the initial click – or the first phone call to a bogus number.

The educational value of using your own phishing expedition is enormous. Not only will it help you patch up holes in your organization, but it also becomes a great teaching tool about why everyone needs to be vigilant. As we use more and more data to conduct business – and in our personal lives – it becomes more and more important to protect that data. You should remember that your organization is part of a data custody chain – a chain that can branch off in many directions. Intruders are highly sophisticated and well-funded – as well as very patient. They will do whatever it takes to get into your system and build tunnels to other systems. You put your reputation and integrity on the line every time you take in data and send it out.

AI will be able to generate untold amounts of data, but there is little it can do to eliminate misinformation automatically.

Eliminating misinformation requires real human intelligence and deliberate, active steps to prevent that first breach – the one that could take 244 days to find. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, in every location and on every device used to conduct your business:

  • Use a firewall and make sure it’s up to date.
  • Use anti-virus and malware software and make sure it’s up to date.
  • Install updates to operating systems and application software on every device you have. Those updates contain security patches and bug fixes to prevent intrusions.

We can help you arrange for a comprehensive security audit that includes a phishing expedition and a deep dive into your equipment and practices. Call us – 973-433-6676 – or email us to discuss your needs and develop a security action plan.