Helion’s Erik Nachbahr explains that dealerships are “low-hanging fruit” for cyber criminals.
Cybercrime targeting auto retailers is on the rise, according to a December 9th article by Melissa Burden for Automotive News.
Cyber criminals target dealerships because they’re guaranteed to hold a cache of private consumer information, like the social security numbers and banking information that are collected for finance applications.
Experts warn that the finance and insurance office is a particularly vulnerable space for dealerships, with employee email accounts acting as a common entry point for cyber criminals.
Automotive News reached out to Helion President & Founder Erik Nachbahr, who weighed in on the surge of cyber attacks dealerships have experienced in 2019.
Dispelling a common myth that data breaches occur only as a result of hacking, Nachbahr explained, “It requires no hacking, really. You just stand up a fake website. So then dealership employees will go in, they will enter the credentials. Then the cyber criminals will actually log in to their email boxes and set up a bunch of rules to forward all of their email.”
This, Nachbahr says, gives cyber criminals easy access to consumer credit card and bank account numbers.