In recent years, the real estate industry has become a more popular target for cyberattacks. While it may not be as high-profile as other industries, such as healthcare or finance, real estate is still a lucrative sector full of valuable data and confidential information. In this article, we will explore seven reasons why cybercriminals are targeting the real estate industry and what steps you can take to protect your business from these threats.
The Growing Popularity of Online Property Portals
One of the main reasons why the real estate industry is becoming a more popular target for cybercriminals is the growing popularity of online property portals. These websites are a goldmine for personal and financial information, as they often contain detailed listings of people’s homes, addresses, contact information, and asking prices. Criminals can use this information to target homeowners for scams, identity theft, and other crimes.
The proliferation of these websites has also made it easier for cybercriminals to find potential victims. In the past, criminals would have to physically visit properties or search public records to find this information. Now, all they need to do is perform a simple search online.
The Use of Social Engineering Techniques
Another reason why cybercriminals are increasingly targeting the real estate industry is the use of social engineering techniques. This attack involves tricking people into revealing confidential information or downloading malware.
For example, a criminal may pose as a potential buyer or seller to gain access to sensitive data. They may also send phishing emails that appear to be from a legitimate real estate company to trick victims into clicking on a malicious link or attachment.
The Increase in Ransomware Attacks
In recent years, there has been a significant increase in ransomware attacks against businesses in the real estate industry. This is likely since real estate companies often have large amounts of data essential to their operations. As a result, they may be more likely to pay the ransom to regain access to their files.
To prevent ransomware attacks and protect your organization, you should opt for exceptional managed IT services. IT service providers can go proactive on threat hunting to find any loopholes in your systems that attackers can exploit. If they find any loopholes, they will work on eliminating them by taking the necessary security measures to secure your systems.
The Use of IoT Devices
Another reason why the real estate industry is at increased risk of cyberattacks is the use of IoT devices. These devices, such as security cameras and smart thermostats, are often connected to the internet and can be used to control various aspects of a property remotely. However, these devices can also be hacked and used to access a property’s network.
For example, a hacker could gain access to a security camera and use it to spy on people inside the home. They could also use a smart thermostat to increase the temperature of the house, causing the occupants to become uncomfortable and potentially leading to a fire.
The Use of Cryptocurrency
Another factor that has contributed to the increase in cyberattacks against the real estate industry is the use of cryptocurrency. Criminals often use cryptocurrency because it can be challenging to trace and is not regulated by governments.
As a result, criminals can often get away with using cryptocurrency to pay for illegal goods and services. For example, drug dealers have used cryptocurrency to buy and sell drugs on the dark web.
In addition, some criminals have also used cryptocurrency to ransom properties. In these cases, the criminals will encrypt the property files and demand that the owner pay them in cryptocurrency to decrypt them.
The Impact of Cyberattacks
Cyberattacks can have a devastating impact on businesses in the real estate industry. In addition to the financial cost of the attack, such as paying for ransomware or losing customer data, companies may also suffer from reputational damage.
For example, if a customer’s data is leaked due to a data breach, they may lose trust in the company and take their business elsewhere. In addition, if a property is vandalized or destroyed due to a cyberattack, it could harm its value.
Some steps businesses in the real estate industry can take to protect themselves from cyberattacks. These steps include:
- Educating employees about cybersecurity risks and how to avoid them
- Implementing strong security measures, such as firewalls and intrusion detection systems
- Regularly backing up data -Restricting access to sensitive data
- Working with a reputable cybersecurity company
By taking these steps, real estate businesses can help protect themselves from the growing threat of cyberattacks.
Cyberattacks are a growing concern for businesses in the real estate industry. These attacks can have a devastating impact, both financially and reputationally. Companies need to take steps to protect themselves from these attacks. Some measures that can be taken include educating employees about cybersecurity risks, implementing strong security measures, and regularly backing up data. By taking these precautions, businesses can help protect themselves from the growing threat of cyberattacks.