How School Solutions Can Protect Against the Dangers of Business Email Compromises
In today’s digital age, email communication has become an essential part of doing business. However, it has also become a prime target for cybercriminals who seek to gain access to sensitive information and funds. Business email compromises (BEC) have become increasingly common, with attacks costing companies millions of dollars each year. While it may seem like schools are not a likely target for cybercriminals, they too can fall victim to these attacks.
The Numbers behind Business Email Compromises...
Nationally, the average financial loss per successful BEC attack has increased to over $64,000, according to recent figures. In 2021, approximately 1,300 reports of BEC compromises were made to ScamWatch, with losses totaling $14 million. It is important to note that this figure is likely much higher when accounting for non-reported incidents.
Schools are not Immune to BEC Attacks!
Schools, like many other organizations, are vulnerable to BEC attacks. These attacks typically involve the impersonation of a trusted individual or institution, such as a principal or a school district office. Cybercriminals will use social engineering tactics, such as email phishing, to trick staff members into divulging sensitive information or wiring funds to fraudulent accounts. Unfortunately, schools may be particularly susceptible to these attacks due to their limited budgets and resources for cybersecurity measures.
In 2021, 83% of Australian organizations received an email-based ransomware attack, according to recent reports. This figure highlights the widespread nature of cyber threats and the need for businesses and schools to remain vigilant. It is crucial for schools to take proactive steps to protect themselves against these attacks.
Protection against BEC for Schools
One common form of protection is to implement a two-factor authentication process for email accounts. This ensures that even if a cybercriminal gains access to a staff member’s login credentials, they will not be able to access the account without a secondary verification step. Schools can also implement security awareness training for their staff members to help them recognize and avoid phishing attempts.
It is important to note that phishing attacks, which are a common tactic used in BEC attacks, can arrive via various means. Recent figures suggest that 96% of phishing attacks arrive via email, 3% via websites, and 1% via phone. Therefore, schools must remain vigilant in all aspects of their digital communication, not just email.
Step Fwd IT's School Solutions provides protection against BEC
In conclusion, BEC attacks have the potential to impact schools in significant ways. These attacks can lead to financial losses, damage to reputation, and the loss of sensitive information. It is important for schools to take proactive steps to protect themselves against these attacks, including implementing two-factor authentication, conducting security awareness training, and remaining vigilant in all aspects of their digital communication. By doing so, schools can reduce their risk of falling victim to cybercriminals and safeguard the sensitive information they handle.
Contact us today if you think your school needs increased protection against BEC.
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