587-597-5478 heather@thinkinsure.ca

Breaches, DDo’s, Phishing, Whaling, Malware, Porting, Trikbots, Ransomware and Zoombombing.  What do these words have in common?

Yes! These are all Cyber Crimes and every business owner who owns a computer and uses email or has a website is a target.

And nowadays we are all more exposed than ever.  The majority of business owners and employees are working from home now.  You can bet that cyber criminals are also stepping up their game as security working from home is usually not as effective.

The FBI recently announced that cyber crime has quadrupled compared to the months before the COVID 19 pandemic.


Examples of Cyber Risks

  • Employee Error – losing a USB key, failing to secure passwords. If you do hard drive back-ups and the back-up is lost or stolen that’s a huge potential privacy breach that could cost thousands of dollars.
  • Malicious Hackers – These hackers attempt to shut companies down – steal data or money. Hackers have become an enterprise with HR, Research & Development and customer service departments
  • Ransomware/Extortion – This is a hack where data is stolen or made inaccessible and a demand is made, usually for cash (bitcoin). Any business depending on their online presence to sell their products is at risk.
  • Breach – any time sensitive, protected or confidential data has potentially been viewed, stolen or used by an individual or entity without authorization.
  • DDos – Distributed Denial of Service. An attack that attempts to render an online service unavailable by overwhelming it with traffic from multiple sources.
  • Malware – Code with malicious intent that typically steals data or destroys something on the computer. Installed malware on a corporations’ computer can work silently in the background and corrupt months or years worth of data.
  • Phishing – an attempt to obtain sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.
  • Threat Agent – An individual or group that can manifest a threat. This may not even be intentional.  It could simply involve an inept computer operator who trashes a batch job by typing the wrong command.
  • Whaling – An attack that typically involves a hacker masquerading as a senior executive asking an employee to transfer money.
  • Porting – (SIM porting) someone impersonating someone requests a mobile provider “port” or move his number to a new SIM card on a different device. Criminals steal personal information via mobile phones in order to gain access to bank accounts, apply for credit in your good name, or impersonate you to defraud your entire contact list.

The list goes on and changes as new threats are created and discovered.  It’s a moving target.

If you are interested in learning more, you can peruse some of these articles that I have include for you at the end of this blog.

Stay tuned for the next blog where I will share some tips from the experts on some of the ways you can protect yourself.

Thanks for following my videos and blogs. For me, it’s not just about protecting consumers by providing them with insurance options.  Its more about education and communication that helps to identify, analyze, evaluate, and treat risk – be it an insurance product or other method of avoiding, reducing, sharing, or retaining the risk.

Remember – “We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give”

Take care, stay safe and be well.


In the News

April 1, 2020 Cyber-Attacks up 37% Over the Past Month as Covid 19 Bites


Oct 10/19 Cybersecurity breach at TransUnion – 37,000 Canadians compromised.  Occurred in June/July – not discovered until August


Oct 8/19 Survey showed that 88% of organizations participating had suffered one or more breaches in past twelve months due to external cyber attacks.


Oct 3/19- Just a name or birthday can be worth up to $1.50 on the black market. A scanned passport or driver’s license can command up to $35, and a full ID package (name, address, social insurance number, e-mail address and bank account number) can go for up to $100.