Ostra’s Cybersecurity 101 Series is a deeper dive for the non-technical reader who wants to better understand cybersecurity mechanics. This 5-part series covers how the cyber-crime world operates, the evolution of threat generations, why traditional defense models fall short, what a modern attack scenario looks like, and the hallmarks of an effective security platform.
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In The World of Cybercrime, It’s Business Attire, Not Hoodies
A Google search of cybercrime results in images of hooded faceless attackers with spying eyes behind bytes of stolen data. The reality is a little less mysterious, but a lot more frightening. The incredible variety of hidden services and significant information exchange happening out of sight of the mainstream web allow cybercriminals to organize and collaborate, bringing businesses of all sizes, governments, healthcare and education targets to their collective knees. In Part 1 of Ostra’s 5-part Cybersecurity 101 we explore how the world of cyber-crime works like any business, except that their revenue streams come from stolen data and extortion.
Modern Cybercrime: The Dark Evolution of a Burgeoning Economy
In the not too distant past, computer hacking was a cat-and-mouse game between smart nerds defacing websites for sport, and law enforcement who viewed it as more annoying than devastating. Today cybercrime is a booming economy that generates at least $1.5 trillion in annual revenues. Using popular contemporary business models, cybercrime has become the “evil twin” of the legitimate economy, feeding off its profitability and growth, and in some cases outperforming it. In Part 2 of Ostra’s Cybersecurity 101 Series we explore how the ability of cybercriminals to attack outpaced the ability to defend with “detect-to-protect” security, at the same time that data became a highly valuable — and easy to steal — commodity in the digital era.
Unknown Malware is the Normal, Not the Exception
Computer viruses were the stuff of science fiction in 1970, when a program called VIRUS randomly dialed phone numbers using a modem until another computer connected to a modem answered. The answering computer became infected and began dialing in search of another computer to infect. While the fictional first computer virus accurately depicted the mechanics, the scope, scale and power of future malware to wreak havoc was impossible to imagine. In 2019 an estimated 9.9 billion malware attacks cost businesses an average of $2.3M in information loss, revenue loss and business disruption. In Part 3 of Ostra’s Cybersecurity 101 Series we explore how modern malware design challenges traditional defenses, and the advanced defense models businesses need for protection.
Kill Chain: How Cybercriminals Attack
Businesses of all sizes have tuned into the digital revolution to improve productivity, customer experience, and decision making. Digital data is central to modern business. This same data is the dark web commodity that fuels the cybercriminal underworld. In Part 4 of Ostra’s Cybersecurity 101 Series we explore the steps that attackers take, from reconnaissance to exfiltration, in the battle for data.
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Ostra was founded on the principle of bringing top-of-the-line cyber security tools to small businesses who do not have large IT budgets or an entire division of cyber security experts. Our founders bring years of experience protecting large organizations to provide digital security to small businesses.
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