Employees Most Likely Targeted By Cyberattacks

Human oversight is one of the leading causes of data and information breaches, and that extends to businesses as well. Employees belonging to the following departments could be vulnerable to hackers looking to intercept and steal corporate information.

1. C-Suite

C-level executives are said to be at the most at risk for cyber attacks. Given their authority, they have more access to classified information and can sign off wire transfers without secondary approval. This makes them attractive targets for phishing, in which falsified emails are sent as an attempt to obtain confidential information under the pretense of legitimate reputable companies.

“Whaling” is one such form of phishing that C-suites might fall victim too. These are highly personalized, legitimate-looking emails specifically aimed at top-level executives. With most C-level executives breezing through emails, in part due to their busy lifestyles, they may not exercise the necessary caution in opening attachments.

Besides, public Wi-Fi is readily available at hotels and airports which the executives frequent for constant travels. This exposes them to greater chances of data breaches as they surf the web with an unsecured connection.

To protect themselves from cyber attacks, C-level executives should implement stricter verification measures like two-factor authentication for logins and transactions. Having unique passwords for various accounts would help reduce the risks of being hacked too. In addition, Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) should be used whenever possible instead of public Wi-Fi.

2. Human Resource Team

One of the HR department’s roles is to screen potential staff. This renders them more vulnerable to phishing attacks when they receive resumes which might turn out to be malware. As they are also highly connected with other departments of the company, hackers can easily gather all of the employees’ personal credentials and valuable data from relevant departments in one swift operation.

For enhanced cybersecurity, employers can consider investing in antivirus software to scan documents for viruses before they are opened. As for the HR team, they should do their part by constantly watching out for dubious file names and types, as well as inconsistencies in the emails that they receive. Another good practice is to confirm the validity of sensitive requests like confidential data transfer in person first before carrying them out online.

3. Salespeople

In order to obtain and maintain good client relationships, the salespeople are required to interact with business associates frequently. Coupled with their strong desire to clinch the next big deal, they may lower their guard in terms of obliging to requests from strangers online or reviewing online documents when threats are disguised as prospective business opportunities. Moreover, their personal details are usually posted on the web for convenient contact, lowering barriers for hackers to pick them as phishing targets.

Hence, it is crucial for salespeople to err on the side of caution, and remain wary of any suspicious links or files that they receive. Likewise, they should also keep an eye on what they reveal about themselves online.


Cybersecurity recommendations tend to focus on employing preventive software that builds up defense walls around an organisation’s system. However, it is very easy to bypass those barriers and target the employees who are largely unfamiliar with cybersecurity yet deal with highly sensitive data every day. Employees should stay vigilant in their daily work operations and if possible, receive proper training on cybersecurity.

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