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May the 4th Be With You – The Dark Side of Cybersecurity

    Happy Star Wars Day! Whenever May 4th rolls around, we collectively celebrate our favourite Star Wars movies, characters and moments. What most don’t know if that there is a lot to learn from this blockbuster to help us better secure ourselves and our businesses.
     
    We had a blast checking out some tips from Secplicity.  Check out their video series here as they examine famous quotes from one of the most powerful Jedi warriors of all time. 
     

    Little Vulnerabilities Can Blow Up the Biggest Death Star

    Sometimes the smallest vulnerabilities in the most niche software can lead to a chain of events that allow attackers to gain full control of a network. Many IT and cybersecurity professionals have stories about finding old, unpatched, and forgotten servers on their network, which were exposed to the public. Hackers might take advantage of little vulnerabilities in these forgotten servers to gain access to the network, and leverage them as a stepping-stone for gaining complete control. Don’t end up like the Death Star. Patch even your smallest vulnerabilities!

    Jedi Mind Tricks Are Used by the Dark AND Light-Side Hackers

    Looking at the Dark-side of hacking, many advanced malware samples include something called a “rootkit”.  This is a component that helps malware hide inside operating systems. For example, when a security program uses a Windows function to list the files in a folder, in hopes of scanning for malware, the rootkit might perform a technical “Jedi mind trick” on Windows, telling it, “This isn’t the file you’re looking for.”

    If we look on the Light-side, hackers use these same tactics to trick attackers and malware as well. Basically, malware has gotten better at avoiding the automated security systems designed to find it. Modern malware might even wait to see mouse movement as a way to ensure a computer is human-controlled and not automated.  When these security systems see malware waiting for a human, they perform a “Jedi mind trick” of their own, convincing the malware that it sees the imaginary mouse movement it was looking for.

    Learning to hack like a Dark-side Sith lord will help you realize which defences really work to protect against the latest attacks.  Star Wars may have taken place a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, but the lessons you can learn will help you succeed and stay safe in cyberspace!

    Whether you’re new to cybersecurity or an experienced Jedi Master, if you’d like to learn more about security contact us and one of our experienced techs will reach out to you.  May The 4th Be With You!

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