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Cisco’s 2016 Annual Security Report: What You Should Know

Technology giant Cisco Systems releases a report each year that details the current state of affairs in cyber security, explains the latest challenges and trends in hacking, and recommends actions to minimize risks in the coming year.

The 2016 Annual Security Report is now in circulation, and we at Lunarline would like to take the opportunity to call out a few of the key findings. Certainly, the report’s conclusions point to some potentially rocky terrain ahead. But with the right adjustments to security policies and procedures, organizations should be able to keep their risks under control.

Ransomware is a leading hack type, bringing in millions of dollars for black hats.

The re-emergence of ransomware as a popular cybercriminal activity has been on the analyst community’s radar since early 2015. Cisco’s report confirms this hacking method — whereby cyber criminals disable or take control of resources and demand an exorbitant fee to set things right again — is a major source of income for black-hat hackers in 2016.

Combatting ransomware takes a multi-pronged strategy. Malware often remains hidden in systems before it deploys, so a strong malware assessment effort is important. Additionally, it is critical that organizations understand how to react to a ransomware event, so updating and testing the incident response plan is a must.

Malicious browser extensions are a significant source of data leakage affecting around 85% of organizations.

The browser is a pervasive, practically universal tool in the modern workplace. So it should be no surprise that a large number of organizations are experiencing issues with data leaks due to malicious browser extensions. Updated, thorough privacy training is crucial for bringing employees up to speed on safe browsing habits. And beyond that, organizations need to prioritize secure configuration of settings for browsers and other business applications.

Companies need to update their technology.

Older technologies still abound at many businesses. This may cut down on costs related to updating resources, but it also increases the risk of security breaches, as these older programs and components weren’t designed to fight off today’s threats.

Companies looking for cost savings should instead consider moving some operations to a secure cloud computing model. Also, updates or redesigns of the corporate network should always make cyber security a top priority.

Cisco’s research findings show a number of areas where security could use some enhancing, so make the right moves to keep your company safe through 2017 and beyond. Lunarline has the skills and expertise to help you implement these enhancements and bring you some peace of mind.

For more information on Lunarline and our solutions, you can visit our website at Lunarline.com or use our messaging tool to contact one of our experts today.

About Spence Witten

Spence has somehow survived ten years at start-ups and small businesses without suffering a (major) nervous breakdown. As Lunarline's Director of Federal Sales, Spence actually loves working on proposals. If there were any doubt, this is proof that he is in fact certifiably insane. While his title says "Sales" Lunarline doesn't let him off that easy. We make him do real work, too. Luckily he's a recognized subject matter expert in security policy and loves helping clients navigate their way around tricky security compliance standards. He's also been known to lead a software development initiative or two, though that pretty much always ends poorly for everyone involved. He can be reached at spence.witten@lunarline.com.