News

10th September 2016
Cybercriminals could fake your data and then leak it

Hacking to forging – it’s child’s play!

As cyber security experts, Switch2IT often highlights the importance of IT security to businesses so that their all-important data does not fall into the wrong hands. We have warned previously about the risk of hackers breaching your systems and then revealing private information (whether it is passwords or banking details) but there is one glaringly obviously scenario we have yet to cover – the hacking, changing and sharing of faked data!

Technology is now so easily accessible and simple to use that the option of falsifying data has never been more feasible. Let us face it, your six-year-old probably knows how to reset your iPhone and your sixteen-year-old could be sitting upstairs creating videos that would put Spielberg to shame.

In recent years, UK cyber security breaches revealing everything from telecoms account holder details to login details for major social media sites have been splashed across the headlines. Further invasions of data privacy have also been reported, in the form of medical records left on a train and phone tapping at the hands of news agencies.

But, to the best of our knowledge and unfortunately to the detriment of the many affected, everything shared as result of such violations was true data. Quite often the point of this ilk of hacking is to expose useful information that can be used for financial gain so fake data would not be much good.

On the other hand there is “doxing”, which The Atlantic’s Bruce Schneier defines best here: “The hackers, in some cases individuals and in others nation-states, are out to make political points by revealing proprietary, secret, and sometimes incriminating information”.

Doxing has been rife in the US over the past few years with famously targeted networks including a national intelligence organisation, a manufacturer of cyber-arms and a dating site for adulterers. Clearly, the leak of private data from such networks has caused everything from red faces to major security breaches but the worrying fact is that the hackers have so much more scope.

Had they wished, hackers could have added the names of a few public figures to the records gleaned from the Ashley Madison data breach and really muddied tinsel -town’s waters. OK, chagrined celebs and politicians could then deny everything in the hope of appeasing their loved ones but, once that seed of doubt is planted, who is going to believe a word?

What is more, cyber criminals could have committed acts of terror with a foot in the door at the likes of the NSA and Hacking Team. The change of smallest details could have catastrophic implications – seriously scary stuff, no?

A few taps on the keyboard and a fiddle with Photoshop could make even the most official looking papers and images into a ferocious fabrication. This gives you yet another reason not to leave your business open to cyber-attacks and Switch2IT is here to help.

IT security, peace of mind

Whether your business is looking to implement a routine computer backup strategy to keep your data safe and sound in a highly secure data centre or ongoing cyber security consultancy, Switch2IT is available to help SMEs in Sussex, Surrey, Hampshire and beyond.

Having worked with clients in the construction, information services and education industries for more than 10 years, we are experts when it comes to cost-effective, reliable IT support services.  IT security is our speciality and we are just as experienced at advising on the best strategies to avoid data privacy breaches as we are at getting to the route of the problem with digital forensics and investigation.

Contact us today with your IT security concerns and we will get back to you with a quote for technical support that meets your needs. 

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