Ask most corporate executives to define cybersecurity and their initial thoughts turn to data privacy. That’s for good reason. Companies are bleeding corporate trade secrets and personally identifiable information at such an alarming rate that confidentialityissues and related compliance concerns can’t help but dominate the cybersecurity agenda. Yet, ask cybersecurity professionals what keeps them up at night, and the topic invariably turns to data deletion, tampering with control systems, and the potential to cause physical harm over the Internet. These concerns fall into categories that are distinct from protecting data confidentiality. Instead, they demonstrate the importance of maintaining an enterprise focus on the integrity and availabilityof your company’s most essential data, systems and services.
In fact, it is possible that data privacy concerns may soon pale in comparison to other types of potential cyber harms. In that vein, there is a growing list of victims when it comes to data destruction. At least as early as 2010, criminal syndicates began using malicious software, now commonly referred to as ransomware, to hold a victim’s computer hostage by locking it up until the hacker’s demands were met. The risk in these cases isn’t lost data privacy; it’s lost data, period. Today’s ransomware more commonly encrypts files, rendering them into useless bits, followed by the hacker’s demands for online payments in exchange for the password.