Cyber Threats For Retail Stores

Cyber attacks on retailers are real and can occur online or offline. Credit card records can be stolen by malicious cyber-intruders. These attackers are able to enter a retail store in person and hack into your systems. Physical access to your retail store is the first step to a successful cyber attack. Threat actors can gain access to your network by using devices that fit in your wallet, like card skimmers, as well as vulnerable Wi-Fi networks, USB drives, and other hacking equipment. They can also use social engineering tactics to have an insider to help them. All retailers have experienced data being stolen, networks being degraded, and infrastructure being compromised.

Attention To Detail

With cyber security a big problem for retailers, it’s important to know the various methods used by cyber criminals to attack your business. They commonly use card skimmers and unsecured point-of-sale systems to acquire credit card information and steal smart cards. Unsecured or public Wi-Fi networks can also be used to infect connected devices with malware, provide backdoors to company systems, and eavesdrop on user activity.

Not only can a hacker break into your network and steal data, but they can also plant malicious software that will infect your store’s computer system. The software could steal passwords or gather information. A keylogger is a small USB device that a hacker can use to see everything you type, including passwords and bank account information. If someone steals your computer’s memory, they could see all the information you’ve typed into it.

Lastly, there are three other types of cyberattacks that you must be prepared for. Employees who are not trained properly and who do not follow the rules are an easy target for hackers, known in the industry as social engineering. Cybercriminals often pretend to be business partners, contractors, or employees calling you. They could also pretend to be a customer service representative.

Types of Threats

There are various ways that threat actors can gain access to and attack a company’s systems after physically setting foot in the company’s facilities. Fake card readers, known as skimmers, can be placed in a store to steal a card’s data. Smart cards are used to steal credit card information, but they are also used for other purposes. They can be attached to legitimate card readers in poorly-secured areas to collect data. There are two types of skimmers: Bluetooth and non-Bluetooth.

An attacker doesn’t need to be in contact with your card to clone it. Smart cards can be cloned by writing the data to a blank card and creating a copy of the existing card. Moreover, small hardware that automatically steals any nearby smart cards’ data can be easily concealed. This means an attacker could sit comfortably at a retail store and secretly steal the data of everyone who walks by.

When it comes to security, there is no such thing as too much. A PoS system should be secure. This is why you need the best security services in place, including effective firewalls, a reliable VPN, and a hardened operating system. Malware can infect a PoS device remotely, but if you have taken all the necessary precautions, it will not be able to move laterally and infect your IT system.

Unsecured or Public Wi-Fi Networks

Unsecured Wi-Fi can be used by attackers to infect your device with malware. Rogue networks can be installed on a wired network without the knowledge of the administrator. They can be used as backdoors into a retail store systems. The threat of fake Wi-Fi hotspots is real. It’s called “evil twin” attacks. By impersonating legitimate connections, hackers can intercept user data as it’s traveling to and from servers. This is a perfect way for hackers to steal information. If you have an encryption-free connection, hackers can monitor all file sharing and traffic between a user and a server on a public Wi-Fi network. If a public Wi-Fi network is not secured, an attacker can use it to track the users connected to it. This means that the attacker can inject malicious JavaScript into their devices. Even worse, any laptop that connects to the same network can be monitored remotely.

Malicious USB Devices

USB drives are a method of attack in the physical world. Attackers can use these devices to deliver malware directly to company machines. For example, there have been cases of malicious USB charging cables and charging stations that have been used to infect companies. One incident involved a USB charging cable for an electronic cigarette that contained a small chip loaded with malware.
A USB device that looks like a flash drive can be used to hack into systems, steal data and inject malicious codes into computers. The most important thing to remember about this device is that it can’t be detected by any anti-virus or firewall because it’s recognized as a human interface device.

Physical Hacking

A physical keylogger can be installed in a retail store to steal passwords. A physical device can also tap into the RAM of a running computer if specialized equipment is used. A hacker can gain access to a network port by hiding a microcomputer in a store or on a corporate network, and then accessing cellular data. A micro computer can be a backdoor for hackers. This means that hackers don’t have to go through firewalls to get to your computers.

Untrained Employees, Social Engineering, and Insider Threats

On one hand, you have threat actors who work in physical locations and infiltrate retail store systems through the exploitation of inexperienced employees. On the other hand, you have threat actors who work in collaboration with company insiders to obtain information. The result is that threat actors can operate in physical locations to infiltrate retail store systems through the exploitation of inexperienced employees. They can achieve this by tricking employees into divulging credentials, providing account information, or granting access to company resources. Threat actors can easily impersonate IT vendors and social engineer themselves through to gaining access to systems and acquiring passwords from untrained

I hope this article was helpful, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. If you would like to be notified of when I create a new post, you can subscribe to my blog alert.

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