Russia and Ukraine Conflict | Tech Talent Charter – Diversity and Inclusion | UK Businesses Facing Password Security Breaches

February 28th

Article by Christopher Lauder, Delegate Relationship Executive, Rela8 Group

Russia and Ukraine Conflict

To begin, lets return to the story that is unsurprisingly dominating the news – Russia and Ukraine.

Ukraine has been hit by more cyberattacks which the government says are “on a completely different level”. Last Wednesday, several websites including Ukrainian banks and government departments became inaccessible. At the same time, a new ‘wiper’ attack, which destroys data on infected machines, was found to be being used against Ukrainian organisations.

Responding to the conflict, the hacktivist group Anonymous has declared a “cyber war” against President Putin’s government. Shortly after, they claimed responsibility for taking down Russian government websites, including the Kremlin and the State Duma. At the weekend, Anonymous was able to hack into Russian state television channels and forced all of them to broadcast the Ukrainian national anthem on repeat.

Many countries across the globe are preparing for potential retaliatory cyber attacks from Russia for supporting Ukraine. President Biden in the United States has declared that if Russia were to launch a cyber offensive against the US, then the US would respond in kind. It is claimed that a ‘menu’ of options has been put in front of President Biden on how to respond.

In Russia, President Putin has warned Russian critical infrastructure to brace for potential cyber attacks, with Russia’s National Computer Incident Response and Coordination Center saying:

“The attacks can be aimed at disrupting the functioning of important information resources and services, causing reputational damage, including for political purposes.”

Ukraine fears a repeat of when Russia hacked the Ukrainian power grid back in December 2015, which resulted in a power outage for roughly 230,000 people for up to six hours. The world's eyes remain fixed on Ukraine as the war now enters the end of its first week.

Source - Anonymous Declares Cyberwar - Infosec Magazine

Source - US Considers Cyber Strikes - Infosec Magazine

Source - Will Russian Cyberattacks Hit West - Fortune

Source - Ukraine Wiper Attack - BBC News

Source - EU Deploys Cyber Response Team - BBC News

Source - Ukraine Wiper Attack - The Register

Source - Putin Warns of Cyber Attacks - The Hacker News

Anonymous has declared "cyber war" on Putin's government

Tech Talent Charter – Diversity and Inclusion

The Tech Talent Charter (TTC) has released their latest Diversity in Tech report. These reports measure the activities and progress being made towards inclusion, equality, and diversity. This latest report is the first to include ethnicity data, which companies could opt to share this year. The report contains a wealth of statistics and I’d highly recommend you take a look, however here are several statistics that TTC found:

  • The number of tech roles held by women rose from 25% to 27% last year.
  • This indicates that the gender minority representation remains bout 6% higher than it is for the overall tech workforce in the UK.
  • The representation of ethnic minorities amongst TTC Signatory organisations who submitted their statistics for this report was 20% - higher than the UK tech workforce of 16%.
  • Ethnic minority workers make up about 11% of the wider UK workforce.
  • One of the biggest problems facing the UK tech sector is an ever-growing skills gap.
  • All IT related job vacancies now account for 13% of all UK open job vacancies.

You can check out the full report below:

Source - TTC Article - Computer World

Source - Full Report - TTC

UK Businesses Facing Password Security Breaches

According to a recent survey by LastPass, the increase of remote working in the UK means more people need access to tools and systems outside the traditional office. The survey claims that 83% of organisations that suffered a data breach in the last 12 months believe the breach resulted from a compromised password or identity compromise such as phishing. This highlights a greater need for organisations to adopt identity and access management solutions that work with all employees, are capable of securing every credential in the company, and promote the right security behaviours.

The report also found that 8% of respondents said that remote work has impacted their security operations. The top reasons for this include inadequate security on home networks, remote workers being targeted specifically by cybercriminals, employees accessing corporate data/applications on inadequately protected devices, and poor password hygiene.

Unless something is done to tackle this, such as promoting better password hygiene and raising employee awareness, LastPass is warning that the number of breaches because of poor password security will only increase.

The full report by LastPass can be viewed below:

Source - Full LastPass Report

83% of organisations that suffered a data breach in the last 12 months believe the breach resulted from a compromised password or identity compromise
LastPass report
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