Very recently, the KRACK Wi-Fi vulnerability was discovered in all wireless devices using WPA2 encryption protocols. This includes all devices that can connect wirelessly to the internet, including computers, cellphones, tablets and IoT devices. Regrettably, WPA2 is the current de facto security standard in most businesses and homes to ensure secure transmission of data between devices. Unsurprisingly, this shocking cybersecurity vulnerability has left many companies wondering whether they need to disconnect, replace or repair their current wireless devices.
At Thriveon, we pride ourselves in keeping businesses of every industry up to date on all of the latest shifts in the IT security landscape. That’s why we’ll be taking a few minutes today to discuss this critical flaw that’s affecting wireless business devices across the United States. To begin, it may be helpful to provide a brief explanation of why wireless data encryption is so important to give you a better understanding of the KRACK Wi-Fi vulnerability and the threat it poses to businesses.
Understanding the Importance of Wireless Data Encryption
At any point in time, cybercriminals (also known as “bad actors”) within range of your Wi-Fi network can attempt to capture all of the information it transmits wirelessly, including sensitive personal and financial information. That’s where WPA2 encryption comes in. With this protection measure, all traffic on your wireless network is encrypted, meaning that bad actors trying to examine your traffic can’t make sense of what’s happening on it. However, if cybercriminals can break through or slip around this encryption, they attain full access to all of your network data, putting the safety and future of your business at great risk.
Many business owners make the critical mistake of underestimating both the prevalence and impact of cybercrime, forgoing optimal security systems under the false belief that their company won’t be targeted or hit harshly. In actuality, cybercriminals are targeting businesses of every size and specialty in hopes of finding an easy target to steal from. Organizations affected by these attacks can suffer from extensive damage to their IT framework if it isn’t protected properly, creating huge maintenance charges and delays that cost them significant time and money. In more severe cases, cyberattacks can be so devastating that they force businesses to shut down entirely for days or weeks on end, which is why 60% of small companies go out of business within six months of a data breach. This figure should make it very clear why business owners (particularly those of small or medium-sized companies) are so concerned about the KRACK Wi-Fi vulnerability and how it could affect their organization.
What is Currently Being Done About the KRACK Wi-Fi Vulnerability?
Fortunately, Microsoft has already released a KRACK Wi-Fi fix for supported operating systems that will be applied soon. Google and Apple have stated that they will be releasing updates in the coming weeks to address this threat as well. Regardless, the broader concern is for other wireless devices that don’t benefit from these fixes, including IoT devices. For example, time clocks, thermostats and card access systems will need a fix applied to them as soon as possible to avoid potential security breaches from bad actors.
How Can I Protect My Business From Future Cybersecurity Threats?
In light of the KRACK Wi-Fi vulnerability, businesses across the nation are seeking to improve their current cybersecurity measures in order to mitigate the effects of future threats. And while there are many Managed Services Providers that offer superior technical security measures to help your business manage IT threats, these solutions can’t provide a sufficient defense for your network. Why? Because they aren’t proactive.
Most Managed Services Providers focus more on addressing the symptoms of IT issues rather than their sources. Sure, these companies utilize talented staff and excellent security software to fix problems after they pop up. But because their processes don’t root out core problems and handle future threats before they emerge, the productivity and profitability of your business will suffer every time it's forced to react to all of those little issues that plague your IT network. And that’s exactly what sets Thriveon apart.
Thanks to our process-driven approach, Thriveon can identify any current gaps in your IT framework and eliminate issues that are negatively affecting your business. From there, we proactively search for and address potential IT threats before they have a chance to damage your network. In fact, the Thriveon Process is so effective at protecting the IT networks of our clients that we’ve prevented 100% of ransomware and network breach attempts this year. Despite what you may have heard, you don’t have to settle for subpar IT performance, functionality and security. There is a better way. And as an organization that prides itself in arming businesses with comprehensive knowledge of their true IT health and potential, we’d be more than happy to enlighten you.