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How leasing can protect your organisation from cyberattacks

Cyberattacks are becoming more common as cybercriminals access valuable data from a range of vectors. And once a company’s information systems are compromised, it can cause financial and reputational damage. Two of the most common cyberattacks are data breaches resulting from incorrect asset decommissioning and disposal programs and a breach of a company’s internal systems. In the case of a data breach where the attacker gets access to a company’s internal systems, outdated technology and cybersecurity programs are a common cause. This article outlines how leasing to ensure technology is always current can protect organisations from cyberattacks.

Cyberattacks and data breaches are on the rise

Over the last three years, throughout COVID-19, cybercrime has risen by 600 per cent. In 2021, the top five cybercrimes were extortion, identity theft, personal data breach, non-payment, and phishing attacks. The average cost of a cyberattack is AUD276,323, and over half (53 per cent) of this cost is spent on detection and recovery. Therefore, investing in the most current infrastructure and systems to prevent cyberattacks in the first place can keep companies more secure and deliver a range of other benefits (stronger talent retention and efficiencies) in the process.

While SMEs are often the target of cyberattacks, larger companies have recently experienced cyberattacks too. Recent examples include:

  • Morgan Stanley Smith Barney (MSSB): In 2015, the company incorrectly disposed of thousands of hard drives, causing customer data to be accessed by purchasers of the devices on the secondary market. The breach has cost MSSB USD155 million in fines and penalties to date.
  • Optus: On 22 September 2022, up to 10 million customer records were exposed in a data breach. Reports on the attack indicate that an application programming interface (API) that didn’t require authentication was the cause. This meant anyone with the URL could access the customer information.
  • New Zealand Reserve Bank: The Reserve Bank suffered a data breach on 10 January 2021 when cybercriminals accessed data stored on a third-party hosting provider. Since the attack, people within the organisation said under-investment in cybersecurity systems and infrastructure contributed to the attack.

Outdated technology can leave your company vulnerable to cyberattacks

Recent research found that over 10,000 new malware threats are identified every hour. These threats can be heightened when a company uses outdated technology and systems. Further, cybersecurity vulnerabilities worsen when legacy software no longer has support from the provider. For example, support for Microsoft Office 2003 ended in April 2014, so critical security updates are no longer available. While Office may be seen as the basic productivity suite that employees need, vulnerabilities in these programs can compromise a company’s entire system security

Running software and security updates is faster on newer technology, saving time and reducing cybersecurity risks. Generally, companies should update computers that are more than three years old. Not only does updated technology allow for better productivity, but newer models provide better memory, network interface cards, quality parts, hard disks, and processors. With up-to-date processors, operating systems and security software run more effectively. Importantly, upgrading a company’s hardware doesn’t require significant capital expenditure if the right financing solutions are in place.

Address cybersecurity risks with Quadrent

As cyberattacks become more sophisticated, companies must proactively take steps to protect themselves. Upgrading hardware is one of the best ways to protect an organisation, as it can run the latest operating systems and security software efficiently without compromising productivity. Choosing to lease for hardware upgrades delivers these benefits while spreading the cost of the assets over time. Further, the right provider can help you securely decommission and e-waste the technology to ensure company data remains private and secure.

Quadrent works with organisations helping them access assets without sacrificing cash flow and addressing their ESG risk in the process. With a team that has in-depth leasing knowledge and specialised accounting backgrounds, we’ll help you get the most value out of your assets while addressing growing ESG requirements and reporting expectations.

Proactively manage data privacy, cybersecurity and regulatory risks with Quadrent. Click here for more information.