Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 31

EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT

Protecting Your
Utility from

Cybercrime
Assess Risks
and Develop
Clear Policies for
all Employees
BY SHERYL JACKSON

l

Large retailers, health
insurance companies and even

government agencies figure prominently
in dramatic news stories about data
breaches. There is no doubt that data
breaches are on the rise-in fact, a
record 1,093 data breaches affected U.S.
companies and government agencies in
2016, a 40 percent increase from 2015.1
Because news headlines feature
the largest organizations attacked by
cybercriminals, smaller organizations-
such as rural water and wastewater
systems-may believe they are not
susceptible to attacks, said Ken Keiser,
global cybersecurity business development
manager at Parsons. "The belief that they
are obscure and too small to be a target is
the greatest cybersecurity risk in the water

and wastewater management utilities," he
said. In reality, the greatest threat to rural
utilities is not having the right procedures
in place to protect a network, which can
lead to an inadvertent attack, he added.
Rural utilities need to pay attention
to cybersecurity because a breach-
intentional or inadvertent-can result
in loss of control of the process or loss
of control of billing information, pointed
out Cliff Campbell, vice president of
Frakes Engineering. An intentional attack
might occur as payback by a disgruntled
customer or might be initiated for financial
gain, he explained.
While protecting personal and
financial information about employees
and customers is important, not all
cybercriminals are looking for personal

information to sell. In fact, one of
the fastest growing cybercrimes is
ransomware-an attack by malware
that blocks access to the computer
system until a ransom is paid. In 2016,
ransomware attacks increased threefold in
the first three quarters of the year-with
small- and medium-size businesses hit the
hardest. Although one in three victims paid
the ransom, 20 percent of those that paid
never got their files back. 2
The most overlooked aspects
of cybersecurity in rural water and
wastewater utilities include:

* Password management
Each employee should have a distinct
password that is changed on a routine
basis, advised Campbell. There are too

RURAL WATER

31



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017

From the President
Sustainable Utility Management Using Workshop in a Box
Centerville City’s Strategies for Energy Efficiency
Can You Keep a Secret?
Finance: Protect Your Utility with Risk Transfer
Emergency Management: Protecting Your Utility from Cybercrime
A Day in the Life of a Circuit Rider
Regulatory Update
Case Study: Tank Rehabilitation
NRWA Joins
Throwing My Loop
Index to Advertisers/ Advertisers.com
From the CEO
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - intro1
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - cover1
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - cover2
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 3
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 4
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 5
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 6
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 7
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 8
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 9
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 10
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - From the President
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - Sustainable Utility Management Using Workshop in a Box
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 13
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 14
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 15
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - Centerville City’s Strategies for Energy Efficiency
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 17
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 18
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 19
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 20
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 21
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - Can You Keep a Secret?
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 23
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 24
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 25
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 26
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - Finance: Protect Your Utility with Risk Transfer
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 28
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 29
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 30
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - Emergency Management: Protecting Your Utility from Cybercrime
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 32
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 33
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 34
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - A Day in the Life of a Circuit Rider
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 36
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 37
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - Regulatory Update
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 39
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 40
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - Case Study: Tank Rehabilitation
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - NRWA Joins
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - Throwing My Loop
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 44
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 45
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - Index to Advertisers/ Advertisers.com
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 47
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 48
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - From the CEO
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - 50
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - cover3
Rural Water - Quarter 2, 2017 - cover4
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