Protect Your Business: Safeguarding Against Cyber Threats
By Tom Seest
At BestCybersecurityNews, we help entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, young learners, and seniors learn more about cybersecurity.
BEC (also referred to as email account compromise) is one of the fastest-rising threats in cybersecurity. This type of phishing attack involves hacking or spoofing an executive’s email.
Cybercriminals often target suppliers with access to sensitive corporate data and trusted relationships. Through email and social engineering techniques, they attempt to convince employees to wire money to fraudulent accounts.
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Business email compromise (BEC) is a type of cyberattack that targets an organization’s email system. While these attacks have cost businesses billions of dollars in recent years, they’re preventable if you know what to look out for.
BEC attacks are designed to look and act like everyday tasks, often including subject lines that convey urgency or familiarity in order to compel recipients into taking action quickly. They’re more elaborate than typical phishing attempts, using fake invoices and other tactics in an effort to manipulate victims into taking action.
To avoid becoming a victim of BEC, read each email carefully with an objective eye, especially those sent at short notice that require sending money or sensitive information. Furthermore, always call the requester if you feel suspicious or have questions before agreeing to anything.
Another important element in preventing BEC is educating your employees on potential threats and teaching them how to recognize them. This should include providing regular cybersecurity awareness training so all staff members become more alert against scams or deceptive emails.
Additionally, ensure your anti-phishing solution can detect suspicious email addresses and flag them for further review. This is essential as BEC scams involve the use of false email addresses to manipulate people into clicking on malicious links or visiting compromised websites.
These scams often use compromised account credentials to gain access to the target’s internal systems or accounts, so it is always recommended that any employee who needs such privileges has two-factor authentication enabled. This way, they must prove their identity through a combination of passwords and another more secure method such as PIN or biometrics.
Business email compromise (BEC) is a type of phishing attack that involves sending emails to employees at a company. While these scams can affect anyone within an organization, HR and finance staff tend to be the most frequent targets.
BEC attacks often involve social engineering, the practice of phishing for personal information by impersonating someone by using social cues. This may involve using a spoofed email address, phishing link, or address that sounds similar to the sender’s real one.
The purpose is to manipulate the recipient into responding quickly without carefully considering whether the request is legitimate or poses any danger. Once in, the cybercriminal can access their target’s account or personal details, which they can then use for embezzlement of funds or other types of fraudulence.
To protect against business email compromise, it’s essential to implement a company-wide policy with reporting protocols for suspicious phishing emails, two-factor authentication, and other verification measures. Furthermore, ongoing training should be provided so employees are aware of the underlying dangers and can identify these tactics before they are implemented.
Another way to protect against BEC is using a secure email gateway, which sits between the company’s email software and the user’s provider. These gateways filter out phishing emails by scanning their content for malware, malicious links, unsafe attachments, or other elements that an email security filter could identify.
Verifying email accounts, first-time emails, and URLs is essential, as well as making sure important requests are confirmed in person before being approved. Setting up two or multi-factor verification (requiring a code, PIN, or fingerprint to log in along with your password) may also be beneficial.
Business email compromise (BEC) is a cybercriminal scam in which cybercriminals impersonate company employees and vendors to obtain sensitive information or money. According to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, BEC scams have cost businesses billions of dollars over time.
Cybercriminals employ a variety of tricks to make their attacks appear more legitimate, such as forging email addresses or imitating the writing style of an authentic sender. Furthermore, cybercriminals provide specific reasons for their requests in order to make them appear more legitimate.
These Business Electronics Corporation (BEC) emails often contain spelling or grammatical mistakes that are difficult to spot by an untrained eye. Furthermore, they may provide instructions not to contact the purported sender or confirm your request with another person.
These scams can be difficult to spot, but a well-crafted corporate policy can go a long way toward protecting against them. Employees should be taught how to identify and report BEC scams as well as similar phishing emails.
Furthermore, data loss prevention software can be utilized to scan emails and email attachments for sensitive information and encrypt them to protect the sender and prevent compliance violations. Employees should also be made aware of company-wide cybersecurity training in order to remain vigilant against BEC scams and other types of cybersecurity threats.
As the cost of BEC continues to escalate, it’s essential that organizations remain vigilant and take measures to protect themselves. For example, EI-ISAC recommends state, local, and tribal election offices implement policies that identify and report suspicious emails; doing so can help safeguard their operations from BEC or other phishing scams.
Business Email Compromise (BEC) poses a grave danger to organizations of all sizes. It’s an elaborate scam that targets senior executives and finance department personnel with the goal of stealing money, accessing systems, or exposing sensitive data.
Criminals executing a BEC attack employ several tactics and techniques. They conduct extensive research on their target before employing social engineering tactics and malware to convince people to click on malicious links or attachments. Furthermore, they create fraudulent websites to further manipulate people and evade local law enforcement agencies.
The FBI notes that BEC is one of the most significant cybercrime threats in America, costing businesses billions of dollars each year. Unfortunately, these attacks don’t get nearly the attention they deserve.
According to the FBI, these attacks are typically carried out by transnational criminal organizations that employ lawyers, linguists, hackers, and social engineers. Due to their complexity in detection and recovery processes, these incidents may go undetected for some time.
A typical BEC attack begins with a carefully constructed email message that appears to come from an authoritative sender. The attacker may pose as the CEO, finance director, or other high-ranking executive and request that an employee within the accounting department make a financial transfer.
These emails often include time-sensitive language that urges recipients to act quickly. They may also include requests that seem unusual or out of the ordinary, such as the need to wire funds overseas or provide privileged information.
Due to this vulnerability, victims may not even be aware they’ve been scammed until after they transfer funds to an attacker-controlled account. That is why rapid response and recovery are so essential in cases of cybercrime; if organizations take too long to identify a BEC attack, chances are slim they’ll be able to retrieve any funds lost.
Business email compromise is a serious cyber threat that poses an existential risk to companies of any size. It takes advantage of the widespread nature of email to target employees, customers and executives with highly targeted attacks.
BEC attacks typically target a company’s finance team, often employing social engineering techniques. The most prevalent BEC attack involves an email request for employees to wire money directly to an account controlled by the attacker.
These email attacks are hard to detect as there is usually no sudden spike in email traffic that would trigger security filters. Furthermore, the attacks don’t use IP addresses with a known malicious reputation, making blocking the campaign much harder.
Organizations can prevent this type of attack by implementing secure email gateways (SEGs) to filter out potentially malicious emails. SEGs function similarly to firewalls in that they detect and filter out malicious network traffic.
Businesses who want to effectively defend against BEC attacks should implement multi-factor authentication into their accounts and workflows. This involves logging into an email account using both a password and dynamic pin, code or biometric.
Businesses should also implement FIDO OTP security keys as an additional layer of protection for users. These keys require physical access to a device in order to authenticate a user’s login.
To protect against business email compromise, educate employees about the dangers of such attacks and make sure they do not open any phishing or scam emails. For instance, employees should forgo free web-based email accounts in favor of creating a company domain name for their email accounts.
Please share this post with your friends, family, or business associates who may encounter cybersecurity attacks.