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NZX Cyber-attack Is A Timely Reminder

The disruptive and repetitive cyberattacks that hit the New Zealand Stock Exchange, MetService and Stuff Media over the last month is a timely reminder that other events don’t disappear during a pandemic.

It is a timely reminder that our threat landscape is alive and kicking. Hackers do not care about COVID-19. In fact, they probably see it as an opportunity, an opportunity to kick a company when it is down.

To speak to Chief Executive of Telecommunications Users Association NZ, Craig Young, “what keeps us safe from a real virus is that we are at the bottom of the world and we can lock down our borders, but when it comes to cyber, we are just part of the bigger world”.

The worrying thing for me was the NZ hack was one of the oldest, crudest forms of cybercrime which basically involves bombarding your environment to cause disruption. This has been around a long time.

So, as a reminder that cyberthreats will begin to increase in the lead up to Christmas (and if you have not already done so) consider the following three steps.

1) Identify how you’ll contain it and recover

Start to develop a detailed cyber response plan to ensure that you are ready to handle any cyber incident confidently and then also being able to identify the hack, contain it, eradicate it and then recover from it.

2) Validate it through training

Once you have done that, then you can develop some tailored cyber response – resilience training for your key staff. And this will equip them with the skills, the tools, and the knowledge to mitigate a range of cyber threats.

3) Cyber is not just an IT issue

Remember, finally, that cyber is not just about I.T., it’s also about your strategic response. So, ensure then that your executive team know how to report and communicate a cyber-attack, especially if there is any risk of losing customer or client details. Provide them with some communications with a well-thought-out strategy.

A strategy should consider the following four points:

  • When will we communicate,
  • Who will communicate to,
  • What we will communicate,
  • and how will we communicate?

Start your preparation today because the next attack could be on you.

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