What is the Business Email Compromise?
Business Email Compromise (BEC) is a type of cyber attack in which criminals target businesses or organizations by using email to trick employees into transferring money or revealing sensitive information. BEC attacks are also sometimes known as CEO fraud or whaling attacks, as they often target high-level executives or individuals with access to financial information.
BEC attacks typically involve impersonating a trusted individual or entity, such as a company executive, vendor, or partner. The attacker may use a fake email address or other tactics to make the message appear legitimate. The email may ask the recipient to transfer funds, disclose sensitive information, or take other actions that can compromise the organization’s security or finances.
BEC attacks can be highly sophisticated and difficult to detect, as they often involve careful research and social engineering to build trust and credibility with the victim.
How to Protect From Business Email Compromise?
To reduce the risk of falling victim to a BEC attack and protect your business from financial losses and other damages, take the following measures:
1. Implement multi-factor authentication (MFA) – By requiring users to submit two or more forms of authentication before being granted access to their accounts, MFA adds an additional layer of security. This makes it much more difficult for cybercriminals to access your email account without authorization.
2. Train your employees – Educate your employees on the risks posed by BEC attacks and how to spot them. Instruct them to be on the lookout for suspicious requests or unexpected modifications to the regular payment or information transmission process. Conduct regular security awareness training sessions to keep employees informed about the latest threats and best practices.
3. Verify payment requests – Verify the request with the person who made it before transferring any money, ideally through a different mode of communication like a phone call or in-person meeting. Always double-check the details to make sure they match the request, such as the recipient’s name and account number. If any details have changed, be sure to check them with a “verified source”.
4. Use strong passwords – Create strong and unique passwords for all your accounts and change them regularly. Never share your password with anyone and avoid using the same password across numerous accounts.
5. Implement email filters – Set up filters to block suspicious emails that contain phishing links, malware, or other harmful content. Use email authentication protocols like SPF, DKIM, and DMARC to verify the sender’s identity and reduce the risk of spoofing.
6. Regularly update your software – Keep your email software and antivirus programs up to date to ensure they have the latest security patches and protections against known vulnerabilities.
7. Do not be afraid to delay taking any actions before you have verified the situation. Threat actors are famous for putting pressure on the victims to bring them into an emotional state where they are less likely to make rational decisions. Your clients and managers will appreciate your conscientiousness in the long run.
Why is it so important to defend against BEC attacks right now?
BEC attacks have increased recently as cybercriminals employ more advanced strategies to trick workers into transferring money or sensitive information. According to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), there were over 19,000 BEC incidents reported in 2020, with losses exceeding $1.8 billion. 65% of organizations faced BEC attacks in 2020.
Additionally, BEC attacks can have a devastating financial impact on businesses, leading to lost revenue, damage to reputation, and legal liabilities. Small and medium-sized businesses are especially vulnerable, as they may not have the resources to recover from such attacks.
How to achieve compliance?
Now that we understand just how important it is for organizations to protect themselves against business email compromise attacks, let’s examine the most efficient way to be prepared.
The BEC framework was designed to help organizations assess their cybersecurity posture against this threat with best practices for the organization to improve as needed.
Centraleyes has integrated the BEC into its cutting-edge platform allowing companies to seamlessly run through the assessment process. The platform offers you a smart questionnaire, real-time customized scoring, and prioritized remediation guidance to fully implement the BEC controls.
Benefits of using Centraleyes to protect against BEC attack:
- Determine your weaknesses and identify gaps
- Generate actionable remediation steps and improve security immediately
- Analyze automated data created from your input in real-time
- Create a security awareness culture built on solid information
- Make informed decisions regarding cybersecurity
As the assessment is completed, the remediation center is updated in real-time, providing actionable steps for the organization to implement. The organization will be able to manipulate and filter data in order to analyze the results with varying levels of granularity.
Using the Centraleyes platform results in time and resource savings, more accurate and measurable data, and peace of mind.
Protect your company against Business Email Compromise today using the Centraleyes platform.