Real Price of Data Breaches of Critical Network Infrastructures

By PRODAFT Team on March 28, 2024
Real Price of Data Breaches of Critical Network Infrastructures

No matter how robust an industry’s critical network infrastructures are, they can constantly be hacked by cybercriminals. These data breaches will leave the cybersecurity teams astounded with more work their way. As mentioned in Industrial Cyber, the critical infrastructure industries are paying a hefty amount for data breaches. The figures have mounted because they have exceeded $5 million, with healthcare being affected for the 13th time in a row. Let’s dig in to learn more.

What is Critical Network Infrastructure?


A critical network infrastructure (CNI) is a core element in modern businesses. Why? They are essential for the day-to-day operations of any country or society and they furnish the industries with a sound base to share information, communicate, and function without obstacles. This involves several protocols, software, and hardware that facilitate the devices to connect and communicate over a network.


Suppose we discuss the working of a critical infrastructure. In that case, the procedure comprises intricate components, including switches, firewalls, servers, and other devices.  The primary objective of this procedure is to offer the users a reliable and secure network. It permits all kinds of communications and data requirements regardless of the business size.


The Importance of Critical Network Infrastructure

The IT infrastructure has made its presence necessary because it:

  Removes Communication Barrier

Frequent communication gaps disrupt the workflow of the entire organization. Therefore, critical network infrastructure assists in maintaining decorum amongst the employees. It encourages them to discuss and work in synchronization irrespective of the location. In the current times, this has helped remote workers.  

  Boosts Productiveness

A vigorous network infrastructure lends a hand to companies in streamlining their functions. How? Since it minimizes the time and effort to execute multiple projects, which further raises the graph of profitability and productivity.

  Tightens Security

The companies have confidential data and communication that the critical network infrastructure protects from getting breached. How? By putting encryption, firewalls, and other relevant measures into use.


  Offers Flexibility

One of the good parts about critical network infrastructure is its flexibility. This means businesses can expand their operations, adding more devices to the structure without reconditioning the foundation.


   Enables Business Continuation

In the wake of unforeseen situations, the CNI ensures that businesses don't lose their data and continue working through necessary failover measures.


How Do Cyberattacks Affect the Critical Network Infrastructure?

A cyberattack is not confined to damaging the IT domain as it also inflicts damages on other departments or business sectors. The consequences can range in intensity:


  Increase in Deaths

An attack on critical network infrastructure can have a crucial role in increasing the death toll. How? The launch can easily switch off the massive power grids carrying high electricity voltage, and these supply electricity to hospitals, where many patients might be under treatment. The cyberattack resulting in a total blackout and causing loss of life would not be the first instance of these scenarios actually taking place.

  Financial Damage

If cyber criminals hack a financial institution's website, the entity would have to endure a financial loss of billions of dollars that no company wants to bear - look at the example of what happened in the aftermath of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware hack. 


  Leaking of Military Information

Defense or military websites or related organization pages are often sealed with multiple layers of protection to challenge the hackers to surpass the boundaries. Suppose their platforms fall prey to a well-planned cyberattack. In that case, national security will be at risk as military information will get leaked, providing the necessary data to the hackers.


  Societal Unrest

A large-scale critical network infrastructure can give birth to societal and civil unrest. National-wide disruptions (if not international) can lead to dire societal and political issues, with the citizens demanding explanations and improvements in security.


  Essential Services will Get Disorganised

The cyberattacks will not spare essential services like water, transportation, and power. Technical hindrances can disorganize these commodities, too.


  Loss Of Data

Cyberattacks usually happen on websites of organizations dealing with sensitive information, which, if lost due to the hack, can breach data, resulting in a significant loss and risk as unauthorized personnel might have complete access to the data and misuse it in any way they feel.


  Brawny Financial Loss

Once an entity has suffered a significant loss in terms of finances because of a cyberattack, the authority will invest capital to recover the money lost due to the failure of cyber network infrastructure and repair the damage.

  Company’s Reputation at Stake

It takes years of hard work for a company to build a reputation in the market, attract stakeholders and customers, and reach a good position. Still, if the company becomes a victim of a cyberattack, then unfortunately, it also shows that its infrastructure was not competent enough to withstand the attack. They can lose their image in the market and have difficulty regaining the trust of new and existing partners and customers.


How To Protect and Prevent Data Breaches Of Critical Network Infrastructures?

A critical network infrastructure has many fields relying on it, therefore when it usually functions then the other devices connected to it will serve the same purpose, but to be on the safe side precautionary measures need to be taken to avoid big-scale failures from occurring:


Vulnerability Assessment

Test your critical network infrastructure’s vulnerability to potential cyber-attacks even though it's sturdy. The hackers think straps ahead of you and have the expertise to enter your system. Run as many tests as you can for you to have a better idea of how protected your infrastructure is.


Information Sharing Across Public and Private Institutions

Public and private organizations are advised to join hands with government agencies to chalk out multiple strategies to assist them in sharing necessary information on cyber threats and how to resolve them.


Software Update

Software supply chains and systems should be updated regularly. Businesses often fail to do proper cyber-risk assessments because they lack visibility over the attacker’s skills and their supplier’s networks, leaving them hopeless as they wonder how to tackle the situation, increasing the vendor risk and supply chain. Therefore, software updates are a must.


Access Control

Ensure that access to critical infrastructure is given to selected personnel only so that limited people know about the data and information.


Critical Network Infrastructures are essential, there is no doubt about it. But protecting them from hackers is crucial to saving yourself and your organization from paying the cost of the data breach – which can be far more detrimental than ever expected.  That's why basic security measures are no longer enough, and businesses need to know their exposure and potential susceptibility to cyberattacks. Contemporary risk intelligence solutions such as BLINDSPOT allow organizations to monitor their and their suppliers’ exposure to cybercrime immediately and with a precise threat-actor coverage ratio, ensuring that there are no blind spots left to compromise.




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