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Cybersecurity for Architectural Businesses 2023

Cybersecurity for Architectural Business 2023

Cyber trends influence the pace and dynamic of business in modern corporate environments. One in six architectural firms has recently been a victim of a cyber attack, the AJ’s recent industry survey has revealed. Another report in the Architectural Record said that since home working became the norm, architects saw at least twice the number of attacks.

Remember the Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA) ransomware attack?

One company under fire was a London firm Zaha Hadid Architects, which reported the issue to the police on April 21, 2020. Ransomware had been used to encrypt all data, with hackers threatening to block access or publish it online unless a ransom was paid. Staff was completely locked out of the system for a short period, leaving them unable to do their job. It’s not entirely known what data was stolen. Still, the attackers released a tweet with a screenshot of stolen information, including payroll records, financial and project data, client information, and employee details.

As well as the apparent disruption to work and concern for data security, this raised a significant issue about GDPR. Zaha Hadid was required to report the breach to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).

Beware of the cyber threats:

1. Malware

Malware, or other known as malicious software, is a covering term for any software with malicious intent. Most cyber threats are presented as some form of malicious software. Beware of computer viruses, worms, trojan horses, and spyware.

2. Ransomware

Ransomware is considered one of the most devastating forms of cybercrime. It’s not uncommon for attackers to successfully extort vast sums of money from their victims. Sometimes, they extort victims for millions of dollars, with some victims willing to pay up rather than ignore the threat of data loss or exposure. Between 2020 and Q2 2022, the ransomware attacks peaked in Q2 2021 with 188.9 million attacks. Ransomware remained the most widely spread form of cyber attack in 2022. It gained in popularity amongst the cyber community due to its nature and potential to extort large sums of money. 

3. Phishing Attacks

Online scammers will try to trick you into relinquishing your passwords or other personal information by posing as legitimate websites. Often, they’ll even act the same as the websites you regularly log into. These threats are easily avoided with an antivirus program in place. It’s our pleasure to show you which ones provide the best protection against phishing attacks without affecting your computer’s performance or getting in the way of your work.

4. Social Engineering Scams

Social engineering scams are a broad term for the scams often used by criminals to exploit a person’s trust to obtain money directly or confidential information to enable a subsequent crime. Social media is the preferred channel of choice for cyber attackers, but it is common for contact to be made by telephone or even in person.

Protecting your business

Cybercrime has become more prevalent in a rush for everyone to work from home to avoid the spread of Covid-19. People are. Unfortunately, the weakest link is the staff scattered around the world, working from home, which also implies an increased likelihood of a cyber attack. Firms in the construction industry may be targets at the moment, but there’s plenty you can do to keep your data safe. Here are our tips:

Although serious, the Zaha Hadid Architects attack wasn’t as devastating as it could have been because the stolen data was already backed up and regularly tested. Backup is only as good as its integrity. Cyber-attacks, especially phishing attacks, are becoming increasingly common and famous in the Architecture, Engineering and Construction industry, particularly in the current economy, with remote work being the dominant form of work. Make sure your business tools are up-to-date and have processes to protect your business against malicious intent.

YOOPknows is for architectural businesses that are successful but too busy, need to get the work done faster and better. A connected team all pushing together is what architectural businesses are today. Management overview allows those running the business to see what needs to be done and guide staff. Book your demo today.

Next steps to protect your architecture business

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