Halloween isn’t the only spooky theme in October. The witches, goblins, and ghouls have to share this month with something just as scary… cybersecurity hackers. Recognized every October, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM) is a collaborative effort between government and industry to raise awareness about the importance of cybersecurity and to ensure that all Americans have the resources they need to be safer and more secure online.

Cybersecurity: What is it?

Cybersecurity is the protection against the criminal or unauthorized use of electronic data. Cybersecurity threats can come from various channels, such as phishing attacks, which is the sending/receiving of emails that try to coax recipients to share personal information.

Ransomware attacks steal information from systems as a way to demand payment in return for their data back. Hacking into payment systems is another way for hackers to steal online customer’s valuable information. Even stored guest data is at risk for hackers to steal your customer’s identities.

Why does it matter?

The hospitality industry is vulnerable from many angles with it comes to cybersecurity. Generally when hacking hospitality companies, hackers are looking to gain access to customers’ financial data. In recent years, some of the industry’s most well-known brands have fallen victim to cybersecurity crime.

Organizations are held responsible for data breaches with threatened lawsuits and hefty fines in the event of a cyber attack. For these reasons, along with others, it is important to have cybersecurity infrastructure in place to protect your property and its customers.

Knowing how vital cybersecurity is to the success of our clients, Vizergy takes every step to ensure our client’s websites, platforms, and technologies are safe from any potential attacks. Vizergy’s IT experts check the hosting environment and platforms daily for any inconsistencies.

Addams England, Vizergy’s VP of Information Technology, says, “Cybersecurity is a continual top priority for all of our technologies to maintain PCI (payment card industry) compliance and ensure that our customer data is secure.”

How do I avoid/prevent cybersecurity attacks?

Having a secure website is the best way to prevent cybersecurity attacks. As of 2018, all websites must meet the 2018 SSL Standards for Data Security and Privacy Protection. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, (or Digital Certificate) a security method which encrypts of data when being transferred over a server.

SSL certificates help to protect the transfer of sensitive information such as credit card numbers, passwords and usernames, and Social Security numbers. Essentially, HTTPS websites utilize “TLS / SSL certificates” as a means of transferring the keys required to keep exchanged data safely locked up for everyone but the intended recipients.

When installed on a website server, these certificates activate padlocks and the HTTPS protocol that enables secure connections to be made between websites and browsers. Without a TLS or SSL certificate, a secure connection cannot be established, leaving all information transferred between a website’s server and users’ browsers vulnerable to cybercrime.

All Vizergy websites are built to include an SSL certificate. Director of Information Technology, Eric Miller, says, “Security and privacy come first in everything we do. We have a very strong focus on security through continuous learned and technology improvements.”

Questions about cybersecurity? Contact Vizergy.