Security of Information in the Aviation Industry

In recent months BG Aerospace has seen more and more cases of compromised data in the security of information in Aviation Industry. This is obviously not solely an industry specific issue, but since our industry generally deals with larger price ticket items, aviation is a prime target for unethical and unscrupulous individuals, or “hackers”. Recently one of our clients was compromised by using a third party electronic signing application. The application allows users to sign and send contracts via an email link without having to print. The hacker was then able to access the client’s platforms and passwords. The hacker then accessed the emails system and started creating rules in designed to auto archive, and forward. Essentially the client’s email account was sending out and receiving responses from their customers without their knowledge. Banking and wiring instructions were changed, and while this was caught, there was still a $75k immediate loss, and loss of confidence in the brand.  While we all strive for security of information, we need all keep in mind that we need to be vigilant at all times, not only in the way we treat incoming and outgoing information, but also in our browsing and our habits in daily life.

We all know to be vigilant with our banking PIN numbers when we make a purchase, but we also need to protect our own computers. At BG we dedicate ourselves to our clients and to the Industry, as such we’ve done some research and put together a few helpful tips to help safeguard your data. Obviously this list is not exhaustive, but it is the very minimum and basics that we should be paying attention to.

1.     Firewall & Virus protection. Not only should you be keeping your virus and firewall protection up to date, but try to run your full scans regularly to ensure your system is clean. There is no 100% surefire cure, but it does provide an extra hurdle for a hacker to get through. We at BG are firm believers in the security of information, not only of our info but also that of our clients as well. We found an interesting article that focuses on antivirus protection. It makes some good suggestions for applications and some and some of them are even free to use so there is no excuse not to add an extra layer of protection. The paid versions offer more peace of mind with more advanced features too.

2.     Turn off your computer when not in use. Just putting your PC to sleep will not prevent hacks. In fact, hackers prefer to work when you won’t notice things moving around or being changed. Think about it.. it makes perfect sense that when the cat is away, the mouse will play… The back door to your system is usually closed when the computer is fully off.

3.     Don’t use all the same passwords for different accounts. I know we all have a million passwords at this point and keeping them straight is becoming so incumbersome, but let’s not help the hackers and make it easier on them. If you have all your passwords the same for all of your accounts, then at that point you may as well lay out the Welcome mat.

4.     Do not use the autosave feature for passwords in your browsers. The same as you wouldn’t save your credit card info on a third party shopping site.

5.     If you purchase a new router make sure that you change the default password there too. Many routers come with passwords set up by default and by not changing it, your password is a google search away.

6.     Scan all of your downloads. If you download any application, software, image, music, etc… Scan it!

We hope these tips help your business stay safe.