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Smoothwall’s views on the Abta cyber attack

March 2017 by David Navin, Corporate Security Specialist at Smoothwall

Following news on the cyber attack on travel trade organisation, David Navin, Corporate Security Specialist at Smoothwall, coments:

"The cyber attack which has just hit Abta and potentially affected 43,000 people is another example of the importance that businesses must place in keeping their data secure. No company is immune to the threats of cybercrime, yet every business should have the most robust security system in place to prevent a hack, breach or leak and safeguard their data should an incident occur.

Businesses should always be mindful of security regarding third-party partners; while many businesses of course use external companies for support, threat actors see third parties as a ’way in’ to the main organisation, which seems to be the case with Abta’s third-party web developer and hosting company. Abta is saying that this was hack was made possible due to a ’system vulnerability’, but there is no question that these systems should be 100% secure and safe to begin with.

The importance of security needs to be at the top of every boardroom’s agenda and across the C-suite. They need to ensure that they are complying with regulation and build a layered security defence which spans encryption, firewalls, web filtering and ongoing threat monitoring as well as a proactive stance. Companies no matter how big or small all need to have measures and contingency plans in place so that if a breach does occur, they are able to recover and instil customer confidence as soon as possible."

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