Businesses are constantly becoming more dependent on all sorts of tech, especially when it comes to the online world. The major concerns of companies relying on online assets are online privacy and online security.
With all the potential risks out there, it’s very hard to compile a cybersecurity policy that makes a company utterly safe from attacks. Nevertheless, companies should adopt a more agile approach and start looking at their cybersecurity policy as ongoing work.
Whenever there is a newly identified threat, businesses should update their policy and take action to prevent disastrous consequences. Today, we are going to talk about IP addresses because cybercriminals can exploit them to wreak havoc by leaking private data and thus running the company’s reputation. They can even launch devastating attacks on the company’s networks.
Before we get into details, let’s start with the basics.
What Is My IP Address?
To put it in layman terms, your company’s IP address is a network address that allows all computers and other devices on your company network to communicate with other devices over the internet.
Companies usually have a static IP address, which makes them even more vulnerable to attacks. Hackers know this, and they want to mark easy targets. Since they are aware that discovering just one IP address can allow them to perform multiple attacks and make money from it, they often pick companies over individuals.
If you want to know what your IP is, type in “What is my IP” into Google search, and you must find the answer. It is a unique set of numbers. It can be referenced to the physical address in the “offline world.” Once cybercriminals learn your company’s IP, or “online address” they can launch different types of attacks.
IP Addresses Can Be Exploited in a Variety of Ways
Even if you have a cutting-edge firewall and antivirus software, hackers can still damage your operation by knowing your company’s IP address.
A List of Harmful Actions Attackers Can Perform with Your IP:
Download Illegal Content
Once they know your IP address, hackers can easily replicate it and use to download illegal content. In many countries, downloading illegal content is an offense punishable by law. For them, this might just be fun, but you will be left to deal with the legal consequences. Not to mention the reputation of your company, which will get damaged if this entire endeavor becomes public news.
Send Spam Email
Another thing cybercriminals can do when they replicate your company’s IP address is to use it to send spam emails. This will result in your company’s IP address being banned by numerous service providers. And you won’t be able to use their services. For instance, you won’t be able to send company emails.
Launch DDoS Attack
When they know your company’s IP, hackers can target it and launch a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack. Company servers will be rendered unusable, and the entire IT infrastructure will be down. During this time, you won’t be able to deliver any services tied to IT, which will affect both internal and external business processes.
Track Geo Location of Company’s Devices
Finally, cybercriminals can use the company’s IP address to geo-track various devices and target them when they are vulnerable. They usually do this to insert a malware tool that can infect the company network once the device connects to company WiFi, thus giving them access to sensitive data.
How to Protect My Company?
The best way to protect the company’s IP address is to use a virtual private network (VPN). Once the VPN is enabled, all the traffic is redirected through a VPN server and nobody can discover the IP address.
With a VPN, it will appear as if you’re accessing the internet from another location and a different IP address. On top of that, a VPN features advanced encryption making all data unusable even if someone manages to sniff it out.
Companies can pursue other viable cybersecurity methods to add additional layers of security and protect their IP address from being exploited. This includes ongoing cybersecurity training for employees, regular software and firmware updates, a BYOD security policy, and strong passwords.
Hopefully, all your questions have been answered. It is really important to acknowledge the fact that the company IP address can be exploited in several different ways. Fortunately, there are foolproof ways to prevent this.