In the ever-evolving landscape of cybersecurity, insights into real-world cyber attacks can be invaluable for insurers and clients alike. Understanding the intricacies of these incidents not only aids in prevention but also sheds light on the type of coverage needed. In this blog post, we delve into a cyber attack that occurred about a year ago, involving a tech company providing platforms for clients. The company’s transparency in detailing the attack and the subsequent forensic report offer valuable lessons for businesses aiming to fortify their cybersecurity measures.
An Inside Look at the Cyber Attack
At the beginning of the year, this tech company fell victim to a cyber attack, resulting in a breach of one of its platforms. What sets this incident apart is the company’s commitment to transparency. By providing a comprehensive forensic report, they offer a glimpse into the attack’s mechanics and the measures in place that prevented extensive damage.
Forensic Report Findings
The forensic report revealed that the threat actor, or hacker, gained control of a single workstation utilized by a support engineer. This individual had access to critical resources within the company. Notably, the threat actor’s control lasted for a brief 25-minute window on January 21st.
During this limited timeframe, the hacker accessed two active customers within the super user application. Super users, having extensive access to systems, are crucial points of vulnerability. However, the report assures that the threat actor was unable to perform critical actions such as configuration changes, password resets, or customer support impersonation events.
The Importance of Internal Controls
What emerges as a key takeaway from this incident is the significance of internal controls. Despite gaining control over a workstation, the hacker’s inability to authenticate directly to any OCTA accounts showcased the company’s robust internal controls. These controls, blocks, and best practices prevented the breach from escalating beyond the initial point of compromise.
Lessons Learned and Future Safeguards
Acknowledging the breach, the company outlined lessons learned and immediate actions to rebuild trust. A pivotal aspect highlighted in the report is the importance of third-party risk management. The attack originated through a third-party platform connected to their system. As a response, the company committed to directly managing all devices of third parties accessing their customer support tools.
Additionally, the report touches upon the need for enhanced protections on third-party access to customer support systems. By ensuring that devices of third parties are securely managed, the company aims to bolster its overall cybersecurity posture.
Turning Challenges into Opportunities
While the incident was undoubtedly a setback, the company’s proactive approach, resilience, and commitment to continuous improvement are commendable. Whether motivated by the necessity of cyber liability insurance or internal best practices, the implemented controls proved instrumental in mitigating potential damages.
This disclosure not only serves as a learning opportunity for the company but also for businesses at large. Understanding the anatomy of a cyber attack is crucial for preventing catastrophic damage. Whether or not your business has a cyber insurance policy, awareness of cybersecurity best practices can make the difference between a minor inconvenience and a major security breach. Stay informed, stay vigilant, and turn cybersecurity challenges into opportunities for growth and resilience.