Do you use AV? Protect yourself from Cyber Attacks

Code - cyber securityAs time passes and technology evolves, we hear more about cyber-attacks and breaches from companies of all sizes. Hackers are wising up and know to look for the weak link in order to gain access into company assets. Security options evolve but so do the hacker’s skills. Network-connected AV equipment is vulnerable – it’s important to understand how to guard against malicious intrusion.

With that in mind, here are the Top 3 threats you may be facing when it comes to AV security, and the strategies you need in order to respond.

 

 1.Cloud-Connected Equipment

Network connectivity is the root cause of AV cyber vulnerabilities. While we’ll investigate some specific potential weaknesses, it’s worth noting – this is usually where the threat starts. To fully grasp how vulnerabilities spread, here are a few key terms to understand.

  • An attack surface is essentially all the exploitable vulnerabilities in AV installations. This may include hardware, software, and the humans who interact with either of these. It also encompasses applications both inside and outside of the firewall, and any software that processes incoming data, email, and attachments. Furthermore, it includes the people who work in these networks and use any of the software or hardware in the company’s AV ecosystem.
  • An attack vector is the means of egress – this is the route a hacker takes to gain access to a computer or network server.

 

 

Ultimately any cloud-connected device is vulnerable.  Whether you use a video conferencing platform, digital display, or microphones and speakers, there is a potential risk for you. For example, if there’s an interactive whiteboard being utilized in a conference room or huddle space and some of the attendees are tuning in remotely – there is a risk purely from this level of connectivity.

 

 2. Voice and Smart Technology

Voice controls and other smart technologies are providing the latest vulnerabilities. AV technologies such as voice-controlled smart speakers, smart digital signage, AI-based video security platforms, and AV automation systems are all possible ways for hackers to gain a foothold in your networks in order to inflict harm.

There is a challenge on how to manage voice and smart technologies as they interface with AV systems. Given the quick evolution of smart technologies and IoT, it is important to adapt quickly. As IT and AV continue to converge – It’s important for the AV industry to get fully up to speed with the ever-changing aspects of technology

 

3.Internal Threats

Did you know that over 30% of cyber-attacks are the work of current or former employees? From deleting data to outright attack, internal threats are a significant issue for many businesses. While all businesses want to build a culture of trust, it is important to bear in mind what internalcontrols are needed in this regard, to protect against potential cyber-security threats now and further down the line.

 

4.Correcting Vulnerabilities

How can you be prepared? Here are some steps to take to correct vulnerabilities to cyberattack in AV:

  • Restrict Access – You are probably familiar with multi-factor authentication and role-based access control? These are typical ways of restricting access to only those who need access to perform their job functions. That said, when there is pressure to complete projects, often best practices may not be adhered to in the face of meeting deadlines. It’s here where you must stress the importance of ongoing vigilance in restricting and monitoring access.
  • Continuously Update – Installing patches and updating software should be standard operating procedure for you.
  • Segment Networks – While total segmentation is not always possible, it is very helpful to be familiar with the principle of Least Route. This helps to limit the logical and physical connections between networks.
  • Filter outbound traffic – Security breaches quite often depend on outbound connections sending data to hackers. Through vigorous filtering protocols, the risk can be reduced greatly.
  • Monitor logs – Most AV devices now can log activity. But that doesn’t do any good if the activity is not monitored. Therefore, it’s important to set up procedures for monitoring activity logs on networked AV devices.

The threats inherent in networked environments are present and very real. But these threats can be dealt with. Understanding vulnerabilities and keeping strong, clear communication with IT and AV providers goes a long way to mitigate these risks. Ultimately it is this awareness that keeps everyone vigilant and ready for any possible issues.

 

If you require any advice or guidance, please don’t hesitate to contact our team.

 

 

 

 

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