5 Minutes with our Cyber Security Expert

Softsource Online Store


Jacob QnA

Paul Flatt

Cyber Security Specialist, Softsource

What are the biggest risks to businesses out in the market right now?

The most prolific risks in the market right now are password attacks and phishing attacks. Many people are still using insecure passwords and not choosing to use multi-factor authentication. In a recent security assessment, we managed to hack 30% of passwords in less than an hour because of poor password practices.

Can you give us examples of insecure passwords and give us some practical advice on creating strong passwords?

One of the most common passwords that we have come across is ‘password123’. When creating a strong password, I like to use 3 separate words with numbers, this way there is no connection or logic between the words and these words are only known to me. For example, ‘elephant cactus beginning 3’ would be almost unbreakable with today’s password brute-force tools.

If businesses have money to do one thing regarding their security what would that be?

Businesses need to invest in security and have a priority to improve their user account access. Implementing multi-factor authentication (e.g. something you know such as your password and something you have such as your device/token) is safer because it requires two forms of authentication to gain access. If it’s not in place other security measures can easily be bypassed.

What are two biggest vulnerabilities in the market right now?

End user training and insecure passwords. Your employees need training to understand what to look for to protect your business from phishing attacks. The following components in an email should raise red flags – payment requests out of character of the sender, emails sent at night or links not from a legitimate source. It’s frightening how realistic and cleverly put together these phishing attacks are.

What are the implications for businesses if they have experienced a security attack?

It’s not the downtime that businesses worry about, it’s the time needed to resolve underlying issues. Resetting passwords can be a timely and costly exercise for any business. Undergoing breach analysis with log gathering and identifying what parts of the network or data have been accessed also contributes to a loss of productivity.In addition to that, reputational costs can be quite significant where companies send emails to clients apologising for the exposure of their private data.

What’s relevant to security right now?

Security patching. Ensure your business computers are patched with the latest security software, to help remediate application and OS security flaws and reduce the risk of attack.

What does Softsource offer as part of security solutions?

Softsource offers security assessments, patch management, antivirus, email and web content filtering and more as a service. These services take away the headache of managing this process internally and allow you to concentrate on your business safely and securely.

What are the emerging trends around security?

Current work done around machine learning and AI have the biggest gains in identifying security risks. We are always looking for ways to incorporate such emerging technologies at Softsource and make them available to our customers.