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Security Concerns Associated With Digital Wallets

Digital wallets are virtual wallets that store financial information and identification documents and allow users to conduct online/offline transactions. Depending on the type of digital wallet, it may contain debit, credit, prepaid, and loyalty card data, as well as personal information like a driver's license, health card, and other identification documents. Cyber criminals can make efforts to get access to this information for monetary benefits.  In order to stay protected, it is important to have in-depth knowledge of the prevailing security risks.

Following is a list of some of the well-known security risks associated with digital wallets:

Attempting to tamper with the application connected to the digital wallet

Backdoor in a mobile payment app allows an attacker to steal login credentials and transfer them to a server controlled by the attacker. This may allow attackers to use information in digital wallet for fraudulent activities.

Exploiting the vulnerabilities of the application connected to the digital wallet

Unauthorized access to mobile payment capability might arise as a result of an attack on mobile payment APIs used for in-app purchases. This may allow attackers to carry out fraudulent transactions.

Theft of bank and credit card accounts linked to the mobile payment app can also lead to fraud. A fraudster might potentially take advantage of flaws in the registration process to add a new mobile device to the user profile and use it to make fraudulent transactions.

Malware/rootkits installation

Rootkit is a serious threat vector that may be used to directly monitor and hijack/alter API requests as they are marshaled to and from the API endpoint connected to the digital wallet. Attackers may manipulate variables in transit, such as payment amounts.

Permissions for gaining access to the device operating system

With the approval of the user, an OS may grant access to particular resources. Even if a program isn't malicious, having certain permissions might allow it to access sensitive information which can be utilized by another app to get unauthorised access to information stored in the digital wallet installed on the device.

Verifying identities of users

On a stolen device, if a hacker is able to circumvent biometric authentication, user’s complete financial/ payment information would be compromised and payments can be made. In some cases, users may authorize payments by just inputting the lock screen pattern on a mobile phone. Because this information can be easily accessed by eavesdropping, it might encourage opportunistic attackers to hijack a device and make payments on the victim’s behalf.

Payments that are illegitimate

If the card issuer’s terms and conditions are not followed, the issuer may refuse to take culpability for fraud.

Payment transaction accountability

To make a payment, the providers demand fingerprint authentication. There have been instances where fingerprint authentication has been bypassed or compromised on mobile devices. Also, when several users have access to the device, accountability is compromised and it might be difficult to identify the individual who made the payment.

Stolen equipment has a larger attack surface

If a device connected to a digital wallet is stolen, criminals may be able to acquire access to payment cards.

Phishing and social engineering assaults

As digital wallets become more widely adopted, attackers may be enticed to launch attacks imitating genuine applications to seek credit card details. They may also resort to phishing and social engineering in an attempt to persuade users to provide the information required to carry an attack.

Centex Technologies provides advanced cybersecurity solutions to businesses. For more information, contact Centex Technologies at Killeen (254) 213 - 4740, Dallas (972) 375 - 9654, Atlanta (404) 994 - 5074, and Austin (512) 956 – 5454.

How Does Cybersecurity-as-a-Service Benefit In Securing Small Businesses?

What is CSaaS and what is it comprised of?

Outsourcing cybersecurity management to a professional Information Security Services provider, who is capable of ensuring security to your business operations is known as Cybersecurity-as-a-Service (CSaaS). CSaaS is frequently sold in bundles that comprise, among other things, the following services: -

  • Dark Web monitoring
  • Post-incident investigation
  • Executive summary reports
  • Email Exchange server security
  • Identity and Access Management
  • Pre-incident prevention and detection
  • End-User security awareness training
  • Threat Intelligence and Threat Hunting
  • Digital Forensics and Incident Response
  • Malware Analysis and Reverse Engineering
  • Security Information and Event Management
  • Device configuration maintenance and backups
  • Vulnerability Assessment and Penetration Testing
  • Firewall, Intrusion Detection-Prevention, and Load balancer support
  • Detecting, Preventing and Responding to various cyber threats and risks
  • Securing - Infrastructure, Network, Data, Endpoint, Application, Cloud, IoT, Physical premises
  • Maintaining organizational Compliance as per various 3rd-party vendor security assessments.

How could small businesses strengthen their Cybersecurity posture by implementing CSaaS?

A few of the primary benefits of implementing CSaaS, that are generic to any business across industries are as follows: -

Cost reduction of hiring, training, retaining Cybersecurity experts

Building identical cybersecurity skills in-house is significantly more expensive than using CSaaS. The global lack of IT Security expertize has made it extremely difficult to locate qualified staff, and those few that are available demand to be well compensated. MSSPs (Managed Security Service Providers) deliver cutting-edge security at a low cost. The CSaaS model removes significant upfront technology expenditures in favor of monthly fees that are predictable. 

24/7 Cybersecurity expertize at your fingertips

Finding a qualified workforce and putting together an efficient security operations team in-house may take a long time. CSaaS is immediately available, giving you access to a huge team of cybersecurity professionals and the latest tools. MSSPs work with a variety of customers in a variety of sectors. So, they have a plethora of real-world knowledge to draw on when battling increasingly sophisticated hackers. Furthermore, they are often available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, which is difficult for small in-house security operations teams.

Stress reduction on HRs and Executive leadership

Even if you have the means, establishing an in-house team of cybersecurity professionals may be difficult. This poses significant personnel issues and puts HR in a difficult position. There may just be insufficient people to effectively handle cybersecurity. CSaaS is helpful since it is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. By working with a third-party vendor, you can be certain that your company will always have enough people to cover the task.

Business expansion by focusing on business operations

Modern firms work in a dynamic, fast-paced, and ever-changing global environment. As a result, an organization’s cybersecurity requirements are likely to change over time. A fresh new firm with only a few people and a modest infrastructure, for example, would most likely have a limited attack surface. A small-scale security suite should serve in this scenario. However, as businesses expand, recruit more personnel, and expand their infrastructure, their attack surface will eventually expand. As a result, they would have to raise their coverage and buy a more comprehensive plan. The CSaaS model’s inherent flexibility is one of its most appealing features. Businesses also can either scale up or scale down as required to make sure they are spending the right amount of money on cybersecurity while avoiding unnecessary services. The entire procedure may be time-consuming, whether it’s monitoring network traffic, managing logs, or making system updates. This might take time away from your primary activities if done in-house. Of course, this can lead to lower productivity, a poor customer experience, and other issues. None of these things are desirable. The benefit of CSaaS is that it allows you to outsource almost all aspects of cybersecurity to a provider. It’s a relatively passive mode of operation. As a result, you’ll be able to concentrate on what matters most to you: developing your company and increasing the revenue & profits.

According to a recent PwC poll of over 10,000 business and IT leaders, this strategy is now being used by 62 percent of companies. With the frequency and severity of cyber assaults on the rise, more businesses are likely to follow suit.

Centex Technologies provide complete Cybersecurity solutions to businesses. For more information on how you can protect your systems, contact Centex Technologies at Killeen (254) 213-4740, Dallas (972) 375-9654, Atlanta (404) 994-5074, and Austin (512) 956-5454

How And Why Do You Need To Secure Your IoT Devices?

Why should you secure your IoT devices?

Widespread digitization has increased the convenience of using the internet, but it has also increased the risk of being targeted by cyber-attackers. Hackers can steal and exploit your personal and financial information, as well as take control of smart cameras and microphones to spy on you. As a result, your privacy and security may be jeopardized.

How to easily secure IoT devices?

Here are the seven ways to secure your IoT devices: -

Router configuration

Router ties all your IoT gadgets together and makes them useful. Don't use the default name for your router which is generally set by its manufacturer. People might find the default login and password and get access to your smart home network (if they discover the brand and model). So, set some strange name that has nothing to do with you or your place. Your router name must be very unique; also avoid revealing any personal information.

Strong access credentials

Set the router's password to something genuinely unique. Use passwords that are made up of a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols. The login credentials used to log into your IoT devices must also be set complicated. It's now critical to set unique set of credentials for each IoT device's user account and smartphone or web application. This ensures that even if one device's password is hacked, the other IoT devices remain secure.

Wi-Fi Network isolation for IoT wearables and gadgets

Many routers support guest network creation. It is advised to protect the primary home network from IoT cyber risks. You can build and deploy a secondary WiFi network. This will be devoted just to the IoT wearables and gadgets. Now, the IoT gadgets are operating via an isolated WiFi network. Hence, even if the hackers intrude, they would not be able to hack into your other vital personal devices.

Disable any features that you aren't using

Many IoT gadgets allow you to control them from any location on the earth. Disable remote access if you only use them on your home's Wi-Fi connection. Smart speakers, too, include Bluetooth alongwith a Wi-Fi connection. What if you don't utilize it? It should be turned off. It may sound weird, but an active microphone might be utilized to listen in on your chats if it is hacked. As a result, deactivating features entails blocking as many of those various entry points as feasible.

Updating and patching devices

Updating the firmware on your IoT devices may not happen automatically. Essential security patches are frequently included in these updates. So, do a manual check every few months and, if any outstanding firmware upgrades are discovered, install them without any delay.

Enable 2FA and MFA

Having a password plus an MFA (Multi-Factor Authentication) adds an extra degree of protection. When someone tries it hard to log in the IoT devices using 2FA (Two-Factor Authentication), they must offer extra evidence of identification every time. This proof could be an OTP or a verification code delivered to your phone or email address. MFA is activated by-default on most of the IoT devices in the market. You can use third-party apps like Google Authenticator to activate 2FA.

Installing an NGFW

A typical firewall lacks the essential security functions such as intrusion prevention and virus protection. Sometimes intercepting the SSL/SSH content and QoS management services aren’t available on traditional firewalls. The NGFW (Next-Generation FireWall) is an integrated network platform that combines a standard firewall with additional security features. An NGFW also contains almost all the features of a typical firewall. This makes it effective at detecting and defending against cyberattacks. NGFWs are an expensive investment, but the amount of security increment they provide for your IoT device network makes it quite worthwhile.

Even if you get the costliest IoT equipment from the most prestigious firms, the safety and security of your IoT devices’ network is ultimately in your own hands.

Centex Technologies provide complete network security solutions. For more information, contact Centex Technologies at Killeen (254) 213-4740, Dallas (972) 375-9654, Atlanta (404) 994-5074, and Austin (512) 956-5454

5 Ways Online Businesses Can Secure Their Customer Information

Privacy, securing data, and providing end-to-end security are unquestionably important components of doing business with clients online. The dynamically changing expectations and habits of online customers’ demands adoption of the best practices of securing user data and guaranteeing seamless user journeys. Some of the ways by which online businesses can secure their customer information are:

  1. Tell the customer how the business uses their personal information - Customers may be cautious to share personal information with brands, owing to a lack of transparency between businesses and customers over how their data is handled. Transparency may go against traditional business practices. But being transparent brings genuine value to products and services while boosting brand loyalty in the current business-consumer connection. Customers can understand and subscribe to the wider picture if you are honest about how you use their data.
  2. Check the IT environment for vulnerabilities and patch them - Businesses, particularly eCommerce sites, should test their sites on a regular basis to find vulnerabilities that aren't detected by their current security measures. Businesses must hire cybersecurity specialists or ethical hackers to identify code vulnerabilities. Running daily scans to ensure that malware hasn't been planted on the site is a basic check to be done. Businesses are also advised to invest in more powerful security programs as well.
  3. Monitor and control the access to customers’ data - Software to assist the integration of devices into IT infrastructures provides extra security layers for login processes. It also provides tools to encrypt emails. While these tools can help prevent unwarranted attacks, they don't address the source of the problem. Human employees and their unpredictable behavior is the most concerning factor. The greatest strategy to reduce the risk to your data is to educate your employees about your company's data protection policies. No amount of technology innovation can insulate a business from human error and oversight. Employees must be educated about the ways to handle sensitive customer information. They must also undergo specific courses that train them in preventing classified corporate information from falling into the wrong hands. The staff must be made to think twice about sending sensitive information over email. Also, the IT teams must ensure that passwords are changed and updated on a regular basis.
  4. Encryption is the need of the hour - Less than half of firms say they encrypt critical data, indicating that it is still a serious flaw. Payment processors such as Visa and MasterCard require retailers to encrypt card information by default during transactions. If the personal data is saved on corporate servers, there is a substantially higher danger of getting it hacked. The data has to be safeguarded with rigorous industry-standard security and the newest encryption technology.
  5. Proactively prepare for a disaster and be resilient - Most businesses have a disaster recovery strategy in place to deal with human error, data center outages, and natural disasters, but cyber-attacks are sometimes overlooked. It's critical to put protections in place to ensure business continuity even after facing a data breach. Care must be taken to ensure cyber-attacks must not be able to disrupt day-to-day business operations.

It makes sense to invest the time and resources necessary to protect sensitive customer data. Businesses must build a culture of joint responsibility for securing data. Data breaches are on the rise, and their impact is expected to be seen for years to come. As a result, criminals are getting wiser about hacking their target networks. Companies are advised to prioritize customer data protection now more than ever.

Centex Technologies provides computer networking, IT security and Cybersecurity solution to businesses. For more information, contact Centex Technologies at (972) 375-9654.

Top 5 Cybersecurity Threats In 2022

Cybercriminals launched numerous cyberattacks in 2021 that were not only well-coordinated but also far more advanced than anything previously seen. Recent cybersecurity incidents affecting some of the world's largest corporations may have caught your attention. In reaction to the COVID-19 epidemic, the globe transitioned to a remote work paradigm and has since progressed to a 'hybrid' work culture. This has resulted in a flurry of new threats, technologies, and business models in the cybersecurity area. Everyone is a target of these cyberattacks, but small enterprises appear to be one of the most popular. CISOs (Chief Information Security Officers) across the globe think these five cybersecurity issues are going to become the new cyberattack norm in 2022:

A range of cyberattacks targeting the Networks and Wifi of remote workers- A firewall and VPN deployed however reduce the common cybersecurity concerns. But educating the staff, and implementing stringent security policies are also a must. Putting up cybersecurity measures, on the other hand, becomes challenging when workers operate remotely. Almost half of the senior IT professionals in companies see their staff developing undesirable cyber-security behaviors. While working from home has been good for many employees, this is turning into a nightmare for security professionals. Unsecure networks, personal devices, and human error are just a few of the top cybersecurity threats connected with remote work. Ongoing employee training, among other security measures, can help to limit the danger to a large extent.

Threat to big data and cloud infrastructure - Increasingly, businesses are turning to the cloud to accelerate their digital transformation. Despite the growing popularity of cloud computing, data security remains a top priority for many businesses. Some of the reasons for cloud environments to be a lucrative target for hackers are: - 

  • RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) has not been properly administered and monitored
  • Misconfigurations of cloud instances
  • Failure to deploy and configure MFA (Multi-Factor Authentication)
  • Lack of monitoring and surveillance of the cloud environment
  • Improper configuration of IAM (Identity and Access Management) policies

Vulnerabilities in IoT enabled devices, wearables, gadgets, and appliances - It's all about becoming data-driven in the digital transformation process. One of the main sources of that data is the IoT (Internet of Things). IoT devices are vulnerable mostly due to a lack of built-in security safeguards to protect them from attackers. Cyberattacks on IoT devices have more than doubled in 2021, according to Kaspersky. Cyber attackers might obtain access to sensitive data and launch attacks against other linked systems by exploiting vulnerabilities in IoT devices.

Ransomware and APTs are here to stay - The classic ransomware narrative involved malicious programs encrypting files quickly with public-key RSA encryption. Then it deleted those files if the victim did not pay the ransom. Threat actors steal data from enterprises in addition to encrypting files in double extortion ransomware attacks. These are also well known as threats that force you to pay first or else they shall breach the company networks. This means that, in addition to demanding a ransom to decrypt data, attackers might threaten to expose stolen data. However, you cannot trust a hacker even if you made a second payment. Blackmailing and extortion are inherent characteristics of APT (Advanced Persistent Threat) groups. Most of these cyber attackers belong to some or the other APT groups. 

Social engineering and phishing - Anti-phishing software is in huge demand nowadays due to the wide scale advent of the work from home model. Credential stuffing is a cyber-attack in which credentials obtained from one service's data breach are used to log in to another unrelated service. These attacks are increasing their intensity. The sophisticated bots attempt multiple logins at the same time and pretend to originate from different IP addresses. The fact that many users employ the same username and/or password combination across several sites makes credential stuffing assaults quite effective. Credential stuffing will remain a severe issue if this practice persists. The most common source of data breaches is human mistakes. Many social engineering attacks will continue to grow in 2022. The lack of end-user cybersecurity knowledge and the attitude that it is the cyber team's responsibility is a red flag that people must rectify.

In 2022, there are a number of other threats that businesses should be aware of. Being aware of the top cybersecurity threat predictions for 2022 is just not enough. It's also critical to have a cybersecurity plan that can defend businesses from these dangers.

Centex Technologies provide state-of-the-art cyber-security and IT systems for enterprises. For more information, contact Centex Technologies at Killeen (254) 213-4740, Dallas (972) 375-9654, Atlanta (404) 994-5074, and Austin (512) 956-5454

Information Security Policy

Since, the evolution of security risks and vulnerabilities is constantly ongoing, compliance requirements have too become increasingly complicated. Many businesses fail to develop a comprehensive security approach to address their concerns. This is why, in terms of cybersecurity, every firm must pay close attention to their information security policies and security posture assessments. 

So, what is an InfoSec (Information Security) policy? 

An information security policy assures that all InfoTech (Information Technology) users within an organization's domain follow the InfoSec principles and advisories. InfoSec policies are created by organizations to protect the data contained in their network systems.

Every organization will need to adopt an information security policy to ensure their staff follows the essential security protocols. InfoSec policy aims to keep data disclosed to authorized recipients on a “need-to-know” basis only. An ideal example of using an InfoSec policy is a data storage facility that holds database records on behalf of a financial institution.

All businesses have confidential information that must not be shared with anyone who isn't authorized. As a result, in order to protect all of their vital data, enterprises must learn about strengthening their information security posture.

An organization's information security policy will only be effective if it is updated on a regular basis to reflect any changes that occur inside the organization. Such, malicious changes or modifications could include: 

  1. Emergence of new cyber-attacks and hackers
  2. Evolution of existing cyber-attacks and hackers
  3. Investigations and analysis of existing cyber incidents
  4. Resolutions and remediation done after prior data breaches
  5. Other modifications that have an impact on the vulnerabilities in security posture

It's critical to improve the data security in any network infrastructure by making it enforceable and resilient to malicious cyber incidents breaches. An effective information security strategy should address urgent issues that occur from any department inside the company. In addition, information security rules should always represent a company's risk appetite, risk impact and security management attitude. This policy lays down the groundwork for establishing a control system that safeguards the company from both external and internal dangers.

4 noteworthy characteristics of any information security policy

The most significant factors to consider when developing an information security policy are: - 

#1. The purpose of the information security policy

Information security policies are created for a variety of reasons. The protection of company’s sensitive data and network systems is one of the most important factors. Organizations must adopt a comprehensive strategy to maintain the security of the data and information stored in their systems. Data security, network security, infrastructure security, endpdoint security, perimeter security and likewise are a part of cyber security strategy. To retain the company’s credibility, reputation in the market as well as respect consumers’ rights, every organization must develop an information security policy. This policy also includes how to respond to queries and complaints regarding non-compliance of the regulatory standards. 

#2. End-goals for adopting the information security policy

The business and its leadership should agree on clear objectives as a group and not as individuals. The first goal the executives should establish is the Confidentiality, Integrity and Availability of data and systems nicknamed as CIA Triad. Although employees should have access to data when necessary, essential data assets should only be accessible to a few top-tier personnel in the firm. Integrity refers to the fact that data should be complete and accurate. Executives can extend the CIA triad by also including Authentication, Authorization and Non-repudiation making it CIA-AAN. 

#3. Data categorization according to sensitivity in the information security policy

Employees with lesser clearance levels should not be able to access sensitive data A strong RBAC (Role Based Access Contol) must be enforced within the information security policy. Data organization will aid in the identification and protection of key data, as well as the avoidance of unnecessary security measures for irrelevant data.

#4. The demographic target of the information security policy

The target audience for an information security policy is determined first and foremost. In the policy's scope, leadership executives can describe what employees' responsibilities are based on their hierarchy and job descriptions.

For more information about Information Security policies and methods to mitigate cyber-attacks, contact Centex Technologies at Killeen (254) 213-4740, Dallas (972) 375-9654, Atlanta (404) 994-5074, and Austin (512) 956-5454