In the past few months we all have become even more dependent on our devices to keep us working, connected to family, and for all of our entertainment needs. In light of the global health crisis, many businesses have adjusted their work environments and become flexible with remote working and are looking at how workspaces can be made safer. Physical safety is one thing to be aware of, but we should also remain vigilant for cyber vulnerabilities given the amount we have all begun to rely on online work, shopping, and research. Here are three cybersecurity threats that you will want to be on the watch for as we all get back to work.
More Sophisticated Phishing and Ransomware Scams
Phishing attacks, geared toward fooling unsuspecting people into clicking on a link that can then install malware or expose sensitive data, are becoming more sophisticated. According to the University of San Diego, many phishing scams are now upping the ante by, “using machine learning to much more quickly craft and distribute convincing fake messages in the hopes that recipients will unwittingly compromise their organization’s networks and systems. Such attacks enable hackers to steal user logins, credit card credentials and other types of personal financial information, as well as gain access to private databases.”In addition, ransomware strategies have begun to evolve by literally kidnapping an individual or organization’s databases and holding all of the information for ransom. In order to protect yourself and your company, be sure to review best practices with your employees which includes: not opening unknown or suspicious looking emails, text messages, or attachments that may trigger a malicious code. In addition, do not fill out personal information on any online forms that could put you or your company at risk. Review these red flags with your team members who are on the frontlines of dealing with clients and emails.
Increased Use of Smart Medical Devices & Electronic Medical Records (EMRs)
According to the Software Engineering Institute of Carnegie Mellon University, “As more devices are connected to hospital and clinic networks, patient data and information will be increasingly vulnerable. Even more concerning is the risk of remote compromise of a device directly connected to a patient. An attacker could theoretically increase or decrease dosages, send electrical signals to a patient or disable vital sign monitoring.”These risks show why it is imperative that medical and dental practices have IT specialists who can help them install and maintain physical, administrative, and digital safeguards for their medical or dental practices.
Third-Party Vendor Vulnerabilities
Many companies work with outside vendors to deal with the day-to-day running of their businesses. These third party vendors or contractors could pose a risk to the security of companies both large and small. A report on “Security Risks of Third-Party Vendor Relationships” published by RiskManagementMonitor.com includes an infographic estimating that 60% of data breaches involve a third party and that only 52% of companies have security standards in place regarding third-party vendors and contractors. How secure are your systems and in-office protocols that can safeguard your company against these kinds of attacks? Drop us a line in the comments or see our posts on Facebook to continue the discussion.