Slava Ruderman, President - Onward
The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a great number of people working from home. While this is good for public health, it may unfortunately lead your employees toward a laxer view of cybersecurity. Cybercriminals are sure to take advantage of this if you aren’t careful, so it is important to be particularly aware of your cybersecurity right now.
The Advantage COVID-19 Gives Hackers
To put it bluntly, diversion. With so much attention rightly given to COVID-19 right now, there are many who are remaining in their homes as much as possible to try and prevent the pathogen from propagating. This approach makes the Internet even more important to so many people. Not only are many businesses operating remotely, many rely on support services and other online functions for their in-house processes. Otherwise, people who cannot work remotely are seeking ways to pass the time, turning to social media and other online services for that.
As a result, a huge number of people are online.
This creates the perfect storm for a scammer or hacker to take advantage of, as they now have a larger pool of potential victims. On top of that, the COVID-19 situation also gives them another opportunity to fool people into handing over their access credentials to personal and business accounts.
Between March 9th and April 26th, a total of 1.2 million domains were created that have something to do with COVID-19. 86,600 of these domains lead to malicious websites, 80 percent of which distribute malware to anyone unlucky enough to interact with them.
As far as phishing attacks and spam go, more of these are also popping up. COVID-19-themed scams are popping up in the form of fake emails, spoofed to look like they come from the IRS, the CDC, healthcare organizations, and various other companies.
Preventing the Influence of Scams
With so many scams and threats out there, vigilance is crucial… especially when you and your team may be working remotely. Any of the security best practices that people should be following in the office need to be particularly focused upon when you’re in the home. For instance:
- Phishing awareness – Phishing can strike through a variety of outlets, from email, instant messaging, social media, and even telephone calls. Being able to spot these attempts is needed if your business is going to remain secure.
- Maintain password standards – Many people have separate standards for their home passwords and their business passwords. You need to discourage this by reinforcing the importance of good password hygiene in all environments.
- Back up your data – Data is important, regardless of where it is accessed. Maintaining a backup and securing it with antivirus and firewall is important.
At Onward, we have the professionals with the experience needed to properly secure your network as you continue your operations. To learn more about what we can offer, give us a call at 312-795-9500 or contact us.