Cyberwar: The War You Can’t See

Battles are currently taking place on the ground, in the air and at sea. There is increasing concern that the current development could involve other countries or even continents. Unfortunately, this is possible even faster in cyberspace than physically.

It is therefore not unreasonable if governments, state institutions and companies are currently concerned about their digital protection.

“The concern is justified,” warns Niko Neskovic, Managing Director of NetComData GmbH, and clarifies: “Our infrastructures are now built on digital networks to such an extent, and this has been intensified again by Corona. Accounting, knowledge management, research, health, economic, security strategies, everything is now digital. Even before the dire circumstances of the past few days and weeks, many cyber soldiers were notorious for their successes. In the past, the profit of these criminal organizations was in the foreground. The situation is currently developing towards the destruction of IT infrastructures.”

It could be everyone

Economy, supply of goods and health as well as state services form the backbone of a country. In geopolitical conflicts, securing these processes is always of paramount importance. “However, the assumption that only large corporations or cities are targeted by such attacks is wrong. Because cyber attacks are now also automated and run as a fusion via AI processes and blockchain – around the clock. For this reason, the incidents that you can read about in the press are increasing,” explains Neskovic. And it can affect anyone – even small and medium-sized companies or institutions in small towns or villages.

Fit in IT security and disaster prevention

The protection of one’s own data, but also the protection of third-party data, is an ever-changing process. For this reason, Neskovic has set up a separate department in his company NetComData that deals exclusively with this topic.

“We work here with analyzes of current and past events. Our specialists deal exclusively with IT security and disaster prevention.” Anyone who is currently working with digital service providers from Russia or Ukraine may be worried about what will happen if the local infrastructure collapses and the company is no longer able to act. But even for those who are concerned about cyber attacks from these countries, here are a few tips that companies can use to find out how they are currently doing in terms of security against cyber attacks:

    • “Check whether you are using products that come from countries without agreements with the European Union. Do not let the imprint irritate you, since companies from trustworthy third countries, such as Great Britain or one of the Baltic States, usually appear here. Actual country of origin requires research or check with your service provider.”
    • “Basically, when programming very individual solutions, it is important to choose a development team that is characterized by transparency and quality criteria. Long market stability, a certain customer reputation and certificates from an independent European body are good indications here. On the other hand, it is not advisable to go only for the cheapest price or therefore ‘to the East’. In the case of complex projects in particular, I also advise choosing a provider with whom personal meetings are also possible.”
    • “Train the attention of your employees in a targeted manner with standardized tools for recognizing phishing emails.”
    • “Create a contingency plan for the worst-case scenario if your IT infrastructure becomes unavailable.”
    • “Check your backups automatically and commission monitoring to be able to identify deviations or malware at an early stage.”
    • “Have your applications automatically checked for gaps on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. In particular, technologies that can be accessed without a VPN. The palette ranges from smartphone APPs to portals for customers and suppliers to your own website or shop system.”
    • “Invite your IT security specialist to audit your infrastructure. After changes in your IT infrastructure, these audits should be repeated.”