While we focus on criminal access to computer systems through broken software (i.e., the recent Heartbleed problem), it's important we don't ignore the broken window.
To illustrate how physical security is important to credit unions and their small-business accountholders, I developed this story based on a real-life case that you can read at http://tinyurl.com/mvhp9dd.
Once upon a time, there was a small business. Someone broke in and did minor damage. Modest items were taken. Luckily, the business owners thought, none of their computers.
There was another small business. Someone broke in and did minor damage. Modest items were taken, including some spare computer equipment.
A third business also had a break-in with minor damage. Computers, servers, and networking equipment were taken. Security cameras showed a couple of men in hoodies and masks, plus the carts they used to haul out their loot.
In response to these incidents, broken glass was repaired. Locks changed. Deadbolts and more security cameras added. Folks sighed and moved on.
But then, strange things started to happen. Charges that couldn't be accounted for (for things like auto parts and computer equipment) appeared on the companies' credit cards. Unauthorized wire transfers were made. Company payroll transactions didn't go where they were supposed to.
Employees with access to credit cards, payroll, and bank accounts were suspected, and questioned-sometimes by law enforcement officers. Trust was broken. Then the weirdness spread. Employees reported fraudulent credit cards, accounts, loans opened in their names. Identities had been stolen.
By the time all was said and done-over two and a half years later-more than 50 small businesses and their employees were affected by fraud losses of over
Credit unions obviously have to pay attention to physical security as well as the security of the software on their computer systems. But remember to also advise your small-business account holders to consider physical as well as software security. You may save them-and your CU-losses and headaches.
Comment on this post and read others by Benlein on the CUES Skybox blog at http:// tinyurl.com/benleinposts. And learn more and register for
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