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What are eavesdropping attacks? Everything you need to know

Eavesdropping attacks are easy to execute and exploit inherently insecure or vulnerable networks. Are your network connections weak or insecure? In this article, discovered tried, true and tested eavesdropping prevention measures that can effectively help protect your distributed digital ecosystems.

What are eavesdropping attacks?

Cyber security-based eavesdropping attacks are distinct from traditional interceptions of private communications (e.g., as in the case of a family member casually, but harmlessly eavesdropping on another from an adjoining room). In the cyber world, eavesdropping is significantly more sinister than that…

Cyber criminal-led eavesdropping attacks enable aggressors to intercept, delete or modify data. Attack perpetrators may record voice conversations, view online chats, extract network data, reconstruct computer screen contents, and more.

Eavesdropping attacks may result in intellectual property theft, password theft, bank card theft, and the theft of similarly valuable and sensitive information.

Eavesdropping incidents occur due to compromised communication pathways, as data is transferred from one device to another across a network in which traffic is not secured or encrypted.

Eavesdropping attack concerns

In the event that a malicious party reads or meddles with messages or other proprietary information, an organization might find itself faced with a small fortune’s worth of remediation and related expenses.

Eavesdropping attacks can culminate in the loss of business critical data, user privacy disruptions, loss of client trust, reduced stock prices and investor dissatisfaction. Eavesdroppers may sell stolen data to third-parties or business competitors.

Cutting-edge cyber eavesdropping techniques make cyber eavesdroppers difficult to recognize. Mitigate the danger. Adhere to the following enterprise eavesdropping prevention best practices as outlined below…

Easy eavesdropping prevention

For most organizations, the following are standard at this point, but are worth mentioning anyway: An essential step in eavesdropping prevention includes deploying a virtual private network (VPN) or virtual private networks in order to encrypt data traveling between two points. Apply the highest form of encryption possible for corporate wireless networks and use HTTPS for web-based communications.

In addition, confirm that your organization prioritizes best practices around multi-factor authentication (MFA). If MFA is a sticking point within your enterprise, here’s why you should overcome multi-factor authentication hesitancy and hand-wringing.

Advanced eavesdropping prevention

  • Authentication. Ensure that your IT or security teams leverage some means of authentication for inbound network packets.
  • Network segmentation. Reduce the potential for eavesdropping attacks by preventing hackers from mapping and picking up information as it travels across your network.
  • Malicious link awareness. Eavesdroppers commonly use shady links to spread malicious software, including eavesdropping malware. Explain eavesdropping attacks and give your employees another reason to avoid clicking on sus links.
  • ‘Avoiding the obscure’ awareness. Remind your intrepid and technical employees about avoiding obscure programs and applications.
  • Update patches and software. A software bug can allow a cyber criminal to slip through digital walls. Ensure that you install patches in a timely manner and that your organization opts for auto-updates wherever relevant.
  • Firewalls. Next-generation firewalls can help protect your business from intrusions, and can provide visibility into eavesdropping attacks.
  • Network monitoring. Monitor networks for abnormal traffic and activity. To detect eavesdropping breaches, security teams may want to adopt the same eavesdropping software that attackers use to detect vulnerabilities.

Fun and friendly bonus insights

At Black Hat Asia, a team of security researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev recently described how sound can reflect off of shiny, lightweight surfaces -including the average soda can- with enough fidelity that it can be used for eavesdropping purposes.

Could the LaCroix can on your trendy, decorative side table communicate your business conversations to corporate spies? Learn more.

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