LPM Insider’s Top 5 Data Protection Articles of 2017

hacktivist

The Hacktivist Threat in 2017

Retail organizations are increasingly finding themselves as the target of hacktivist attacks.

By Garett Seivold

If not before, when the President of the United States lobbed Twitter attacks against Nordstrom for merchandising decisions related to his daughter’s fashion line, it became clear: it’s getting extremely difficult for retailers to avoid being swept into the polarized political climate. (Now Ivanka Trump has opened her own store in Trump Tower.)

In another example, L.L. Bean became subject of a boycott in January simply because Linda Bean, a granddaughter of the outdoors retailer’s founder, had given money to President Trump’s campaign. Under Armour faced a backlash—fueled by its own celebrity spokespeople—because of a few words of praise for the President by the company’s CEO.

Some retailers aren’t waiting to be drawn into the fray. These retailers fully embrace a point of view and social causes and may cultivate more loyal customers–but also may generate ire as a result. For example, MAC Cosmetics, owned by Estée Lauder, diverts a percentage of profits from certain makeup lines to the MAC Cosmetics Transgender Initiative. A spring 2017 campaign for Dove, owned by Unilever, promoted LGBT acceptance and inclusivity… Read the full article.

Physical Security IS Data Security

By David Bitton

According to the online technology dictionary Techopedia.com, “data security” is defined as the “protective digital privacy measures that are applied to prevent unauthorized access to computers, databases and websites.” Note the qualifier word, “digital”.

Data security is characterized in the second part of the Techopedia definition as an element of information technology: “data security is an essential aspect of IT for organizations of every size and type.”

This emphasis on tech/digital/IT when it comes to data security comes as no surprise, and it isn’t really erroneous. Not in the modern era where cyber attacks that occur on global scale regularly hobble military organizations, governments, and universities; even the public power grid has been attacked by hackers. Private companies that experience data breaches lose millions, and when and if they do emerge intact, their reputations are damaged, often beyond repair… Read the full article.

What Is the Best Identity Theft Protection?

Identity theft protection may need to go beyond a paid service.

By Bill Turner, LPC

Like most people, you probably shop online a lot. No doubt you use your credit or debit cards often at stores and restaurants. We know that shopping online and using credit and debit cards increases one’s risk for identity theft. So, what is the best identity theft protection? Is it paying for a service, or just being acutely aware and using common sense?

Many companies offer “ultimate identity theft protection” for a fee. But paying for a service may not be the best identity theft protection available. It’s only August, but 2017 has already seen several major data breaches, ransomware incidents, and cyber hacks. Victims are often offered protection services from an identity monitoring organization for a set amount of time after a breach. A valuable service, no doubt. But does it truly provide the best ID theft protection? Maybe not.

Like most people, you probably shop online a lot. No doubt you use your credit or debit cards often at stores and restaurants. We know that shopping online and using credit and debit cards increases one’s risk for identity theft. So, what is the best identity theft protection? Is it paying for a service, or just being acutely aware and using common sense?

Many companies offer “ultimate identity theft protection” for a fee. But paying for a service may not be the best identity theft protection available. It’s only August, but 2017 has already seen several major data breaches, ransomware incidents, and cyber hacks. Victims are often offered protection services from an identity monitoring organization for a set amount of time after a breach. A valuable service, no doubt. But does it truly provide the best ID theft protection? Maybe not… Read the full article.

Email Scams Just Keep on Coming

It’s amazing how many sophisticated people get conned.

By Bill Turner, LPC

Most people know that con artists sending legitimate-looking emails that attempt to induce individuals to reveal personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers, is known as phishing.

The latest major email phishing scam was reported on Monday. This time, it was about Netflix. An email with the subject line “Your suspension notification” was sent to as many as 110 million Netflix subscribers telling them their account is about to be canceled.

The email is well designed, looks legitimate and is even individually personalized for the customer. It demands immediate updating of the customer’s account information to avoid being cut off. When the customer clicks on the link provided, they are routed to a fake, but very real-looking, Netflix page. They are asked for updated login information and credit card numbers… Read the full article.

Phone Scams Remain on the IRS “Dirty Dozen” List of Tax Scams for 2017

By Bill Turner, LPC

In a recent article (“Email Scams Just Keep on Coming“), we looked at email scams as a fast-growing cyber crime. This post will examine an older crime: less prolific in today’s world, but often more costly to the victim.

Before we start, a side note about email scams. Since I wrote the email scam article three weeks ago, I have kept track of potentially fraudulent emails I have received. The count: thirteen. On Saturday, I received a legitimate-looking email from Bank of America telling me that there had been numerous unusual sign-in attempts on my mobile banking account. A link to my account was included. I was encouraged to sign in and verify all my information. When I independently signed in to my account using the “real” B of A website, no alerts were listed, just as I thought. This just reinforces the fact that we are all potential victims of email fraud, and fairly often. Beware!

Now on to phone scams. Scammers impersonating government agencies often use the phone to facilitate their crimes. Just recently in Orlando, where I live, scammers have been attacking owners of brand-new businesses. They call owners who are just ready to open their new business and tell them they have failed to pay sufficient utility deposits. Their demand has been $2,000 to $3,000, to be paid immediately to a specified account—or their electricity, water, etc. will be turned off. At least three business owners in the past three months have paid the money before realizing it was a hoax… Read the full article.

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