John Clayton
Country Manager Mexico & LATAM
Arista Technologies
/
Expert Contributor

The Invisible Modern Warfare: Cyberattacks

By John Clayton | Thu, 03/24/2022 - 13:00

“The eyes cannot see what the mind does not know.”

That is the real reality of what is happening right now in many businesses across Mexico. A false reality and a false feeling that this does not exist because we often do not see a cyber war taking place. It is a behind-the-scenes war, the quiet war that does not get noticed, until, of course, something physical happens, often when it is too late. War not in a traditional sense. No. A war that is evolving fast throughout the world along with the increasing threats that companies in Mexico are faced with. The invisible, quiet war that will create a loud bang, under the noses of CEO’s, government officials and people in general.

Mexico is 52nd in the Global Cybersecurity Index – which is not good enough and says that Mexico has to do much better if it wants to thrive in turbulent times. Turbulent times that will not go away because cyberattacks are here to stay. That is the reality we are in.

The government must be prepared, have policies in place and have a collective, robust defense system at the ready.

CEOs and decision-makers must be proactive, visionary and show strong leadership in their fight against cyber criminals and even rough countries.

Cyberattacks have no boundaries. The truth is, it matters not where you are physically found, what political beliefs you have, who your friends or enemies are, what competitors you have, or which country you favor because we are all in this together. Looking at it from a deeper context, we are all under one umbrella and when one gets wet, it is a certainty that we all get wet.

Being hyper vigilant during today’s dangerous wars, such as the war in Ukraine, criminal wars are the building blocks for a thriving environment. We must realize that we live in a hyper-connected world that requires hyper awareness and a vision to oversee increasingly rapid changes in our business and political world.

Wisdom is not about knowing things; it is about being able to know, then knowing to do the right things at the right time. The time is now to implement a safeguarding system surrounding one's business.

Gone are the days when we just had to worry about losing our data, or a client's financial information. While these are still critical, cyberattacks are now much more sophisticated and the damage is much more serious.

What we are now talking about is the annihilation of critical infrastructure, injuries, or loss of life. A true tangible disaster where the Mexican government and business community must  work together and stop this from happening. It is no longer the science fiction movies that we used to watch in in the ‘80s. It is here facing us. War. The war with Russia and Ukraine, the war on international terrorism and, of course, the war on crime.

You do not need rockets to crush critical infrastructure and criminal gangs do not need to visit  your business to steal from you. You do not see these people. They are invisible, unknown and in the shadows. There is an old saying: Know thy enemy. The problem is that you can no longer see your enemy and this gives the illusion that everything is good.

Let me ask you to consider this question. What is more dangerous, a man with a crowbar trying to break into your business premises, or a hacker who can break into your unsecure network, your industrial control system (if you are a chemical plant or a nuclear plant)? I will leave you to think about this.

You must keep in mind that hackers who hack into IT or OT systems are motivated by financial gain, political cause, military aims or a competitor that has a malicious goal.

It is so important that we keep control firmly in our hands.

Mexico has incredibly talented, visionary, and intelligent leaders. From CEOs, decision-makers, fantastic people in management positions along with people within the field of IT and OT cybersecurity so the power and control are in the hands of the Mexican people and it is important to ensure that businesses in Mexico do not become victims of cyberattacks and do not become targets. Act now before it is too late.

Photo by:   John Clayton