If you’re a public sector IT professional, the chances are you’re more than a little worried about being hacked… if you haven’t been hacked already. Some recent research conducted by PWC showed that over 40% of public sector IT departments had admitted to a data breach, largely blamed on them being unable to keep pace with security trends, while at the same time coping with the digitization of government services. So why are public sector organizations such a hot target?
Once upon a time, not so long ago, we sought only to protect the Internet and Cloud Applications were simply the unruly, unknown beast that were yet to be tamed or understood. Times however have undoubtedly changed and as a consequence traditional security as we knew it, has been unceremoniously exposed to lack the flexibility demanded by the market it seeks to serve.
If we’ve done our job well and the PR wheels are spinning as they should, then you’ve probably seen the recent press release detailing CensorNet’s acquisition of SMS PASSCODE. To say that I’m feeling a little bit pleased about it, would be the textbook definition of a gross understatement.
There are 300 percent more cyber attacks in financial services than any other industry. 300 percent! And it’s no wonder, really. With potentially sky-high rewards if they hit the jackpot of infiltrating banking networks, it’s no wonder hack after hack is aimed at financial services organizations.
Saying that regulatory pressure is over loading financial services IT departments is a bit like saying people don’t trust real estate agents – it’s stating the obvious. And it has gotten a whole lot worse since the global financial meltdown. As investment bankers played black jack with retail banking customers’ cash, the regulators had to put measures in place to protect consumers, their data and above all, their money.
Barely a week goes by without some enormous organization falling foul to a cyber attack and the financial services industry is far from immune. With its potentially sky-high rewards, the financial services sector is right up there on the hackers’ most wanted list.
Remote working used to be a dirty word in business circles didn’t it? Organizations thought workers couldn’t be trusted to work out of sight – they might be watching day-time TV or slipping off to the gym. But they are slowly coming around to the idea that rather than impede productivity, remote working actually makes a workforce far more productive.
Last month – as you’ve probably read - a group of hobbyist hackers announced they had cracked 11.2 million user passwords from the troubled dating website Ashley Madison. Adding insult to injury, the group, called Cynosure Prime went on to publish the top 100 passwords. Revealing themselves as technologically inept, as well as morally questionable, passwords included “123456” in the top spot, followed by “12345” and “password.” I don’t think that even more obscure ones such as “secret” and “affair” would give your average hacker sleepless nights.
It is exciting times as we officially release version 8 of our platform for multi-factor authentication.
During October we held a number of launch events celebrating the arrival of version 8, and I had the pleasure of hosting the one held in Denmark. Here we welcomed our community of customers and partners who were among the first to see the highlights in version 8.
In a world where evil lurks at every connection point, one sometimes has to think and act differently! I predict that in a near future, the way we think and act in the authentication space will change.