Time to raise your cyber defences


February 8, 2022

Whilst the world is keeping a careful eye on the tension between Russia and Ukraine, our intelligence services are keeping a close watch over our borderless cyber space.

Last month the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) issued new guidance saying it is vital companies stay ahead of a potential cyber threats, following a series of cyber-attacks in Ukraine.

For years Ukraine has been at the forefront of cyber conflict and has faced major disruption to everyday life and in some cases such cyber-attacks have reached beyond Ukraine’s borders.

Whilst reports have suggested that NCSC is unaware of any specific threats to UK organisations, they are making it known that companies need to be ready. In recent weeks the NCSC has warned our critical infrastructure about specific vulnerabilities known to be exploited by Russian hackers. 

Why is there a risk to UK companies?

There’s talks and suggestions that the UK, along with other countries, may impose significant economic sanctions in response to any Russian military action. This could then make these countries a target.

In recent years, cybercriminal groups, allegedly based in Russia, have been responsible for a multitude of ransomware attacks. Those affected include UK schools and councils. Another instance was the well reported attack on the US Colonial pipeline that led to a state of emergency being declared in Georgia and President Biden calling on Russia to clamp down on the hackers. 

Russian criminal gangs lead the world in financially motivated cyberattacks. But it is not unprecedented for state-sponsored hacks to be used for political purposes. In June 2017 a number of global companies were hit by the NotPetya attack, which was ultimately linked to the Russian military.

With the increase in attacks, combined with the uncertainty between Russia and Ukraine, it’s easy to see why the NCSC is issuing guidance. Effectively, they’re suggesting companies  move from the cyber equivalent of Defcon 4 to Defcon 3.

But how can Darkbeam help?

Part of the NCSC’s heightened threat guidance is to check your internet footprint. This has to include being aware of the digital risk posed by your third-parties, since a high percentage of attacks are initiated through the supply chain. Whilst you can never eliminate risk, especially those posed by a third-party, there are tools that you can use to give you an understanding of an external risk profile and any vulnerabilities that may leave you exposed to an attack. Our automated platform, Horizon, gives you the ability to continually monitor and view third-party digital risk in seconds.

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