A recent study on cyber security has found that many companies, including those in the transportation industry, are vulnerable to cyber attacks because they haven’t properly secured privileged administrative accounts that are used to run software applications and grant access to hardware.
As reported by Truck News:
One of its key findings is that cyber criminals aren’t necessarily launching attacks directly against their target victims. Instead, the hackers often look for ways to reach their end goals via the target’s supply chain partners.
The report, entitled Privileged Account Exploits Shift the Front Lines of Cyber Security, was compiled by Cisco Talos Security Intelligence and Research Group, Deloitte Financial Advisory Service LLP’s computer and cyber forensics team, Deloitte & Touche LLP’s cyber risk services division, Mandiant, RSA, Verizon Enterprise Solutions’ RISK Team and CyberArk.
Cyber attackers will often target smaller to medium sized companies because they are more vulnerable, but also because they have to the corporate networks of larger, more secure business partners.
For this reason, threat investigators have traced attacks to non-traditional targets such trucking companies and all types of professional services firms, from management consultants and auditors to litigation attorneys.”
By attacking through a trucking company, for example, cyber criminals not only gain access, they gain knowledge about their target,” says Newton, Mass.-based Adam Bosnian, executive vice-president of the Americas for CyberArk.
“If I were really looking at how to get into an organization or trying to figure out where the good stuff was, I might want to know when the company’s trucks were doing deliveries, what’s on the payload, how frequently are they delivering that payload, how they schedule that information and is there another backdoor into the ultimate target of my attack. So it is all the things along the process. Those types of things are valuable to an attacker as they take the many different pieces of information and put it all together into a successful attack.”
In other words, says Bosina, if criminals can find a weak point in the supply chain, that company is now a weak point for all of its customers.
“It’s not a one-time type of thing. If they remain persistent in that network, that weak point can be leveraged for multiple attacks, not just on an individual target.”
“When we talk about these types of accounts, one of the things that is really interesting about them is how numerous they are within an organization. Pretty often a company doesn’t know all of the privileged accounts that are within their environment, which is surprising. After having worked in this industry for over 10 years, it still happens at some of the biggest companies out there.”
For the full article – including how hackers gain unauthorized access to privileged accounts, as well as possible safeguards – click here.