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Organisations should prepare against fifth generation cyber attacks, Voges warns


Threat Prevention Sales Leader, Middle East and Africa at Check Point. Andrew Voges.<br />Photo: Pinterest

Andrew Voges is the Threat Prevention Sales Leader, Middle East and Africa at Check Point. He spoke with ADEYEMI ADEPETUN, on the latest trends in global cyberattacks, especially fifth-generation attacks. Excerpts…

How will you describe the 2017, which saw increase in cyber attacks globally, Nigeria inclusive?

The attacks were indeed massive. It however, varies from organisation to organization and countries to countries, depending on the size of the organisation and the extent of damage caused by the attacks.

Small businesses may not feel the impact as much as big organisations felt it. Attacks on organisation’s data could lead to operational downtime and also bring down the entire operations of an organisation.

Cyberattacks can disorganise productivity, and affect returns on investment.

It appears Cyberattacks is becoming generational, what differentiates their sophistication?

I will like to describe the nature of cyberattacks and the perception of organisations towards the attacks from various levels of distinct generational attacks.

The first generation attacks, which occurred between 1980 and 1990, were mild with various kinds of virus infections, but in the second generation attacks, which came between 1990 and 2000, the attacks were more severe and damaging and the attacks were launched through the Internet.

What the companies did to mitigate the attacks was to get firewalls installed in their systems to prevent the attacks.

The third generation attacks, which were launched from 2000 to 2010, were targeted at software applications, while the fifth generation attacks from 2010 to date were mainly through malware, which comes as cyber war and they come repeatedly on organisations.

Now the perception of organisations in these different generational attacks varies because they were also thinking fast on how to get the right solutions to address the attacks.

Looking at the generations, to what level will a multilayer architecture help mitigate attacks? Multilayer architecture is the key to addressing cyberattacks of any magnitude.

It provides full scale protection on the data and systems and prevents them from cyberattacks. It helps protection of cyberattacks up to 99 per cent.

What are your advices to organisations’ complacency about mitigating impact of cyber attacks?

My advice for such organisation will be built around consolidation. They have to find better ways between cost cutting and investment in cybersecurity through consolidation with their software security vendors.

From Check Point view, we can offer solution that will give organisations the full insight of their security risks and advise them on what solution they need that could be cost effective, and still protect the organisation from cyberattacks.

CheckPoint solutions appeared focused on largely enterprises, are there solutions for SMEs?

The good news is that Check Point provides solutions for both enterprise and small businesses.

So the nice thing is that prior to shifting to our new technology, we also realised that we still need to take care of smaller businesses, in as much as we provide solutions for big enterprise organisations.

With our new technology solution that is based on cloud solution, we ensure that we provide the right solution for every size of business at affordable cost.

So we offer the same protection to both big and small organisations, including government owned organisations. We have big solutions for big and enterprise organisations and we also have small solutions designed for small businesses, because we know that the small businesses also exist.

Is there room for interoperability with CheckPoint security solutions?

We have technology partners globally and our solutions that are deployed by our partners have full features of interoperability, which allows our solution to run side by side with the solution from order vendors.

So if any organisation wants to maintain two different solutions from different vendors, it is possible with Check Point solution because of the interoperability features that come with our solution.

So our solution can integrate with different networks and still offer the best result in terms of cyberattack prevention and mitigation.

So we can integrate with order networks and still provide the best of cybersecurity solutions for organisations.

What solutions will you recommend for Nigerian organizations to curb the growing influence of cyberattacks prevalent in the country?

The best cybersecurity solution to be recommended for any organization depends on the kind of attack that is prevalent. In Nigeria for example, attacks such as malware and phishing are prevalent in the country.

Irrespective of the kind of business embarked upon, be it in the manufacturing, construction, pharmaceutical, and financial, the attackers look for vulnerability in the system to launch their attacks.

So what we will suggest as IT security experts is the solution that will offer full protection of the entire system and data of an organisation.

We have a solution called Sandblast, which offers the best of protection to organisations’ data and system. I will also suggest generation fibre security solution to address organisations’ need in the area of cyberattacks.

Hackers are looking at new ways to launch cyberattacks on organisations. What is Check Point doing to counter such attacks?

Part of our solution to address the current advancement of hackers is based on our free cloud solution that is connected to all our technology solutions.

What free cloud does is to address the attacks from the intelligent division, and from the signatures, and these are realtime solutions that address any new cyberattack.

So with this, any customer that is connected to Check Point solution is fully protected from newer forms of attacks.

Our solution goes beyond signature update, and it comes with realtime update, which is best to detect and stop new forms of cyberattacks, and this means that we can secure up to 99 per cent of such prevention.

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