It is no longer possible to ignore the risk of a cyberattack in the modern world. The days of lone hackers testing low traffic sites are long gone. Today’s cybercriminals are organized criminal cells that regularly carry out attacks in the virtual space not only on ordinary users, but also on businesses of all sizes. According to a recent study by McAfee, the annual damage to the global economy from such attacks is approximately $ 1 trillion.
To create an effective line of defense against cybercrimes for a business, it is no longer enough to install an antivirus routine on a work computer. It is necessary to take a responsible approach to the choice of the device itself for work. Here’s how HP EliteBook 800 series laptops can protect not only themselves but also your business from cyber threats.
Tell me your password, and I’ll tell you who you are
In today’s computers you can find different mechanisms for protecting against unauthorized access to data. In most devices, authentication is based on three key mechanics:
- Password access set by the user/owner of the device.
- Access via third-party devices/services (tokens, smartphone, and key generator programs).
- Access using user biometric data (face, fingerprint, vein or iris recognition).
However, individually, these systems are still vulnerable to cybercriminals, and one of the most reliable ways to secure access remains an alphanumeric password system. Most people are uncomfortable remembering secret character sets, so they either use the simplest combinations (according to DLBI service, the most common passwords in 2020 are still based on 12345 and QWERTY variations), or remember the most secure selection of letters and numbers and then use it everywhere.
As for the facial recognition systems installed in most user devices, it is relatively easy to fool them: they can take for the owner of the device not only a visually similar person, but also a mask printed on a 3D printer. A fingerprint printed with three-dimensional ink on conductive paper can also provide an intruder with access to a gadget. Even an iris pattern can be spoofed if necessary: one hacker association first obtained an image of an iris pattern and then printed it on a regular contact lens in order to gain access to the data.
Finally, the use of third-party devices (such as tokens to generate one-time passwords, Smart Cards, or smartphone apps) certainly helps protect information. But this approach to security makes the user dependent on a third-party device or service, which can be inconvenient for constant use.
Therefore, it is better to count on multiple protection factors in protecting information on a work laptop: two-factor or multifactor authentication, combining the use of a password and additional ways to strengthen digital security. The HP3 Multifactor Authentication security system allows you to connect multiple logins at the same time – not only a password, but also biometrics.
Paperwritingservice.nyc has already used this protection and think this makes the information much less accessible to strangers.
All-seeing eye webcam
Usually, when it comes to hacking webcams, the first thing to talk about is not so much access to a laptop camera, but rather the cameras in “smart” gadgets. Often these devices are “baby monitors”, devices like Google Nest and simply inexpensive surveillance cameras. But this does not mean that hackers are not interested in cameras on laptops: through them, among other things, you can get valuable information about both the owner of the laptop and his office, about which corporate network he works in. This can be useful later when composing a phishing letter, for example, if it is known that the person is a member of the organization of essay writers.
The camera can be accessed via RAT (Remote Access Tool), a remote access utility which can be downloaded to a computer without the user’s knowledge if he opens an infected file via e-mail or clicks on a dubious link in his browser. Cybercriminals may disable the camera’s power-on indicator beforehand, and the user will not even be aware of the remote recording. Because of this potential risk, some time ago it became fashionable to tape the camera with stickers, tape or other means not intended for this purpose, but even this does not always perfectly protect against third-party surveillance.
Another thing – a specially designed plastic curtain, which is equipped with laptops series HP EliteBook. To preserve privacy, users can use it to hide the camera lens on the device.
Very often, while paying close attention to protecting against digital threats, users forget about the vulnerabilities that await them in everyday life. One of them is so-called visual hacking. Simply put, it’s getting information by tracking what’s happening on a user’s monitor. Visual hacking can easily take place in an open space, in a co-working room, in the next seat on an airplane. It is in these circumstances that random people or intruders can obtain valuable data simply by peeking over your shoulder.
Fortunately, there is an easy way to protect yourself from this non-trivial breach of privacy: a special monitor feature that hides the contents of the screen when viewed from an angle: you can only see the contents of documents or chats when you are directly in front of the laptop. Such covers are available separately, but the EliteBook series laptops from HP already use its own technology HP Sure View: with this solution you do not have to worry about the safety of valuable data. A spy simply won’t see it.
The fight between hackers and cybersecurity specialists is like a war that never stops. Cybercriminals are constantly on the lookout for vulnerabilities and malware. BIOS, the firmware that does the initial system checks and runs the OS, is also under attack. Earlier such attacks were not very widespread, but now they are increasingly common.
The potential damage that can be caused by programs such as LoJax (a rootkit which attacks the UEFI BIOS itself and remains on the computer even after reinstalling the operating system) is enormous. With their help, attackers can get full control over the computer and all files on the hard drive.
HP Sure Start is a BIOS protection program based on HP Endpoint Security Controller. It allows the BIOS to recover in the event of an attack and protects critical system software elements. If BIOS tampering is attempted, the built-in HP Sure Start utility automatically detects it, alerts the user, generates a report, and “rolls back” the software to the latest “healthy” version. HP Endpoint Security Controller is a piece of hardware, which makes it a particularly robust piece of protection.
Anything can be hacked
But it’s not just the BIOS that needs protection, it’s the whole system: all elements of it, including installed software, can be vulnerable to attack. This is where HP Sure Run helps, a solution based on HP Endpoint Security Controller technology. It maintains a secure state of the computer, monitors critical processes and applications, detects threats, and alerts the user about attempted attacks, restoring working versions of applications. Because the alerts come via the Windows Action Centre, not only users but also system administrators will be aware of them, allowing them to counter the threat more effectively.
In a world where the number of vulnerabilities and cybercrimes is growing every day, the usual active war on hackers is no longer acceptable for business because the risks are too great. Measures must be proactive – and the right laptop, designed with all business needs and security in mind, is one of the most important.
The author Dennis P. Reed possesses a vast experience in the IT industry, especially in the domains of website and mobile app development and digital marketing. He writes on topics encompassing the above mentioned domains and is considered a maven in his chosen field – Information Technology.