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How a Cyber Hack is Affecting a Top-Rated Television Show and Millions of Viewers

Posted by Brett Morgan
Aug 17, 2017 2:51:36 PM

If you were one of the estimated 16 million people that watched the anticipated Game of Thrones (GOT) episode on Sunday, July 31, or any of the other most recent episodes, you might have heard buzz about the HBO cyber attack. The Huffington Post reported that hackers obtained 1.5 terabytes of data from the HBO network and leaked the script to the August 5 GOT episode, plus files and proprietary information from other top-rated HBO shows. In laymen’s terms, 1.5 terabytes is equivalent to 32 months of continuous music play, downloading 225,000 full-length movies, or 768 years of photos. Now, that’s a lot of data!

HBO released a statement confirming the cyber incident and is working with their cybersecurity firms to protect its proprietary information. As you can see, cyber criminals are taking it to the next level when it comes to compromising data. Cyber criminals are using their hacking capabilities to bring more attention to themselves by stealing data with more value to a company. Simply put, cyber criminals understand that the payout for leaking information from a corporate business is far more intriguing than limiting themselves to compromising a person’s bank information or social security number.

At the end of July, journalists received a written message with stammered English stating, “the greatest leak of cyber space era is happening” and they should spread the word. It’s safe to say that there may be more breached information released in the days to come. We don't understand why cyber criminals hack and leak this type of information, but we can assume it's for personal gain or to show how vulnerable businesses can be.

There are many tactics to help your business secure its networks and protect itself. Here are a few best practices to incorporate and make sure your information technology systems are ready if a breach occurs.

  • Be sure all your operating systems are up-to-date. By updating your computer systems with the latest version of the operating system, it will fix any bugs and help prevent a possible hack.

  • Be sure a firewall is installed and up-to-date. A good firewall will protect your systems from a possible hack and still allow your employees to work without interruption.

  • Install the latest software with protection against viruses, spyware, and phishing attempts. This type of software will allow maximum protection against cyber-hacking attempts.

  • Be protective when it comes to your company’s wireless network(s) and stored information. Hide your company’s wi-fi name and use encryption to safeguard sensitive information.

  • Spend time educating your workforce so they are aware of security measures they can take to protect themselves and the company’s information. Review computer usage policies and other related email and social network policies to be sure all employees are in compliance and understand what is expected of them.

These types of preventive measures could help reduce the risk of a cyber attack. But, another safety measure to consider is a cyber liability insurance policy. With cyber liability insurance, you help minimize the aftermath of a breach and help rectify related issues before they get any worse. Data breaches can be expensive and are inevitable. In a recent study, more than 50% of small- to mid-sized businesses surveyed stated they faced a cyber security breach. It’s never a question of when will it happen, it’s what will you do when it does happen to you.

Want to safeguard your company from the financial burden of a cyber attack? Click here to contact us, or call 800-527-0066  to get a cyber liability insurance quote today!

Images from hbo.com

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SWBC's BusinessHub blog is a one-stop resource for business owners and company decision makers. Come here to learn tips and best practices for risk management, operational improvement, employee retention, and more!