Hacking does seem all the rage at the moment. Last week, almost
5,000 Australian businesses lost their website content completely
and permanently when someone hacked the server of their web host.
We also recently had the RSA incident, causing the wholesale
replacement of RSA tokens, the hacking of PlayStation's
database and domain name registry Distribute.IT, the revelation
that Dropbox is about as safe as your letterbox, and the massive
theft of other people's email addresses from Epsilon.
It is all a little bit scary, we were motivated ourselves to
find out what'd happen if our web host went down
–imagine having to recreate our awesome website!
But there are seriously existential risks at play –you
could lose your website, your customers' personal and credit
card information -basically most businesses are at ultimate risk of
losing even their whole business if the perfect hacking storm
What can the law do to help? Well, yeah you have avenues of
redress. You can always sue someone. You can put indemnities and
liability clauses in your service contracts and rest assured that
it'll be someone's fault and that they will be held
accountable. Maybe the hackers will even get prosecuted, this stuff
is a crime for sure. But, honestly, that's all going to be cold
comfort when your reputation's been trashed and your customers
have all headed for the exits, or your system's been down for a
week and nobody can find you online.
Therefore, we say, forget about the law and think about
pragmatics. Our four top tips:
Redundancy –whatever it is that matters, make sure
it's backed up. Website content, databases, server content etc;
a recent copy should exist, somewhere where you and your mainframe
Basic security –egenforced password changes.
There's cooler stuff around too, for example someone's just
launched a web portal where you can search databases to see if one
of the hacking groups like LulzSec has stolen your staffs'
Disaster recovery –have a plan for what happens when
the world comes down around your ears, metaphorically or
Insurance –all these risks are insurable, so insure
None of that creates work for lawyers, so it must be good
With our compliments
We do not disclaim anything about this article. We're
quite proud of it really.
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