Thursday, February 21, 2013

Cyber Attack

Cyber Attack

It gets personal when your small business gets hit. At first, we thought it was just a computer glitch and a coincidence. The Import customs broker that we use in Canada did not receive our emails and suddenly we were inundated with offers from competing Chinese import brokers. Ours is a specialty-coffee import business. We import some of our Asian coffee by way of Canada. When we did not get an answer to our email – only a barrage of Chinese offers – we contacted the customs broker. The broker said their email was not going out and no, they did not receive our email. This does not hurt us because we can deal by phone, but it must cost the broker dearly from loss of contact with their customers.

Too small for an IT, we set all of our internet security settings to maximum. On Outlook, I went to tools/options/junk e-mail/International and chose `Blocked top level domain list.` The list gives the option of blocking email by country. I checked China. This will probably not stop the hackers, but it will at least stop the flood of illicit offers coming in because of hacking the customs broker.

Why would they do that? Well think what happens when Chinese brokerage companies control our customs procedures. It’s like the attempt to control our shipping ports and our rural TCP/IP networks.

Our government is blustering but will do little, maybe some lawsuits. We can do a lot, however. Look at the label on all of your purchases. Buy American! We have done it before and we can do it again. No wonder Wal-Mart experienced decreased sales. All of their stuff is from China.