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UK businesses warned to strengthen their cyber defences



Russian hackers targeting UK businesses


Cyberwarfare is a present-day threat when conflict between two nations develop, with cyber attacks targeting government departments, banks and communication networks, alongside a military invasion. Threats can disable computer systems, spread disinformation, or used for espionage, all of which can extend beyond the feuding nations.


As the Ukrainian crises deepens, UK organisations could be caught in the crossfire as hackers scour servers for vulnerabilities to exploit. We discovered an increase in malicious cyber activity and attacks emanating from Russia on 20th January 2022 concerning Russian-based IP addresses that were targeting UK’s financial institutions scanning for vulnerabilities. Of course, any weaknesses detected by hackers are an opportunity to conduct more debilitating attacks. For example, the DDoS attacks that took place on Ukrainian organisations on February 15th and 16th that were attributed to Russian hackers. Any NATO sanctions on Russia since invading Ukraine may trigger retaliatory cyber attacks on NATO allies, including the UK. So, it’s paramount businesses strengthen their cyber resilience against potential threats that may arise from the conflict and exercise good cyber security practice.


Ukraine crisis: Guidance on strengthening your cyber security


The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has given a stark warning to organisations to strengthen their cyber defences since the DDoS attacks on Ukraine, and ahead of any forthcoming cyber attacks. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) also issued ‘Shields Up’ guidance to all organisations in the US with recommendations to increase their cyber security posture. The guidance includes advice for organisations on how to reduce the risks of a data breach by maximising their cyber resilience, taking swift action to detect cyber intrusions, and preparing incident response teams ahead of potential attacks.


Defense.com has already noticed some of our customers in financial and insurance sectors being targeted with attempted attacks since the rise in tensions between Russia and Ukraine. When threat levels are raised, it’s advised to be proactive in securing systems to reduce exposure and minimise the risk of a cyber attack. Here are some fundamental actions organisations should prioritise to ensure their security posture is robust:


Copyright: : Oliver Pinson-Roxburgh, CEO and Co-Founder - Defence.com


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