An often forgotten part of a business’s daily operations, help desks may seem relatively unimportant since they typically face repetitive and often low-stakes customer service tasks.

However, help desks are unfortunately now in the tech industry’s spotlight due to waves of catastrophic cyberattacks on help desks that have cost businesses hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.

As hackers are now increasingly targeting help desks, it is more important than ever to protect your help desks and understand why these cyberattacks are devastating to your business.

Hackers Have Proven Help Desks to be Ideal Cyberattack Targets

Hackers are utilizing seemingly old-school tactics to fool help desk services by opting to phish help desks out of private customer account information.

Hackers will call into help desks pretending to be customers (whom they can effectively impersonate by using their personal information, often gained from social media) to fool the customer services representative into thinking they are the customer in question. 

Once hackers access these accounts, they will take customers’ valuable information to disastrous results, such as credit card or bank account numbers, identity theft, and even selling personal information on the dark web.

When a company loses its’ clientele’ personal information, it can be catastrophic for a business. Hacks can shatter a customer base’s trust in a company, making them refuse to do business with them and permanently damaging their public reputation.

Losing private customer information also makes a business vulnerable to significant lawsuits, as victimized customers can sue for not having their information protected. These lawsuits can be expensive in terms of paying potential damages and legal fees that will quickly rack up.

Help Desks are an Entryway to Access Valuable Business Data

While the violation of customers’ private data is a brutal loss, hackers breaking into customers’ accounts is only the tip of the iceberg. Hackers use the same techniques to access a company’s administrator account to achieve a much bigger goal: taking down the business itself from the inside out.

Administrative accounts are the big fish for hackers, as access to these accounts can not only lead to greater availability of customer information but also grants the ability to obtain sensitive company information and operational capability.

The most disastrous example of these cyberattacks is the help desk hack of MGM Resorts. The hacker posed as an administrative employee using information from their LinkedIn account. When the hacker called MGM Resorts’ help desk, the customer service representative did not require additional verification. 

The customer service representative granted the hacker access to the administrator’s account, and the hacker deployed a devastating ransomware attack that cost the resort chain over $110 million and the loss of their customer’s personal information.

However, company information is not always the target of a cyberattack. Often, hackers will also breach a business’ operational systems, paralyzing it. Hackers will then freeze a business out of their operations and hold it hostage until a ransom is paid. These ransoms are incredibly costly, and due to the anonymous nature of hackers, these ransoms are not always traceable even with law enforcement assistance.

Recovering From a Cyberattack Can Disrupt Business Operations

Help desk cyberattacks don’t just hurt a business’ digital information; they can also damage their physical operations.

When a company faces a cyberattack, it can also slow down its network service, dysfunction in its devices, and crash online store websites. These disruptions can derail income and alienate potential customers, as recovering from these cyberattacks can take several days. The technological consulting and cybersecurity repairs needed after a cyberattack can also be incredibly costly and become a massive hit on a business’s finances.

By investing in proper cybersecurity, companies can save massive amounts of capital by protecting themselves from hackers looking to infiltrate companies through vulnerable help desks.

The Risk of HelpDesk Hackers Hurts Customer Service Relations

Despite help desks proving to be a chink in the amour for a business’ cybersecurity, helps desks aren’t going anywhere.

Customer service is essential to any business as it provides an open line between the customer base and the company to ensure product satisfaction and effective services that enable customers to use their respective platforms.

With today’s marketplace relying on digital administrative systems, help desks have become a necessity that businesses cannot afford to live without them.

Even with businesses being at risk of help desk hacks, they must continue using them to reach their customers. Likewise, customers need to trust help desks as a safe way to recover their account information and keep their products working correctly.

If customers cease to trust their help desks, the line of communication between them and their clients will be severed, which is challenging for both businesses and their clientele.

Why You Should Use Traceless to Protect Your Help Desks

Protecting your help desks from phishing is critical. However, most help desks don’t have services that ensure the identities of your callers.

That’s where Traceless comes in.

Traceless is a cybersecurity service that verifies its callers’ identity through multi-factor authentication integrated into your help desk software. By having Traceless protecting your help desks, you can feel safe knowing you will always be confident about who is on the other end of the line.

If you want to take the next step in protecting your customers and business, start your Traceless free trial today and give yourself the online security you deserve.