Five Pandemic Cyber-Security Lessons

Organizations are making efforts to protect their workers however; exposure to cyber-threats is increasing significantly. Read on below for five pandemic cyber-security lessons learned from COVID-19.

The outbreak of COVID-19 is changing the current situation of the economy, creating confusion for industries such as retail, tourism, aviation, and transportation. As more people are working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic, cyber-security operations are facing tremendous new challenges. COVID-19 is forcing business leaders to adapt operating models faster than ever before to ensure survival. The large-scale adoption of work-from-home technologies, greater use of cloud services and an explosion of connectivity allows companies to continue operations even with social distancing and “stay at home” orders in place.

However, this shift is putting immense pressure on cyber-security operations.

Cyber-security operations are facing tremendous challenges:

In order to protect the health of employees and the company itself, some companies that have never done remote work now also start working remotely. This can provide some never before seen challenges such as:

  • Working from home has opened multiple vectors for cyber-attacks through the heightened dependency on personal devices and home networks.
  • Social engineering tactics are even more effective on a distracted and vulnerable workforce.
  • Critical business assets and functions are significantly more exposed to opportunistic and targeted cyber-attacks by criminal organizations and nation states seeking to exploit vulnerabilities and plant seeds for future attacks.

Security bugs and privacy-abusing practices are not new, but have been exacerbated by the growing demand for cost-effective and just-in-time solutions, along with the pressure to digitize and innovate quickly to keep ahead of competition, increase operational efficiencies, improve customer experience and improve business decisions with enhanced analytics.

These five pandemic cyber-security lessons from COVID-19 ensure effective business continuity in the “new normal.” :

Organizations are making efforts to protect their workers however; exposure to cyber-threats is increasing significantly. Here are 5 lessons we ave learned to reduce our risk from these attacks.

  • Fresh Opportunities for Criminals: This crisis offers cyber-criminals a slew of new opportunities to launch phishing campaigns around an ordinary threat or humanitarian disaster. Be aware there are new threats every day
  • Home Workers Are Targeted: Increase in the number of cyber-attacks on computers and unprotected home networks used for remote working due to the spread of coronavirus. Take certain steps to ensure privacy at home via VPN, anti virus software, ect.
  • Keep Training Employees: As phishing attacks are on the rise, it is important to make sure remote workers are trained and that they have regular reminders about phishing attacks.
  • Criminals Impersonate WHO, CDC: Criminals are disguising themselves as WHO or CDC officers to steal money or sensitive information, such as your personal information. There are certain verbiage hackers may use, so be mindful of sketchy words.
  • Essential Organizational Defenses: Ensure organizations step up their defenses, both for protecting employees as well as protecting its customers and partners from any insider accounts. Deploy effective antivirus and email filtering software and other security software to identify and monitor for unusual activity.

In the COVID-19 context, cyber-security leaders must strike a critical balance between security and privacy, time to operations and market, cost and convenience.

Within organizations, cyber-security leaders need to take a stronger and more strategic leadership role. They need to move beyond being compliance monitors and enforcers to better integrate with the business, manage information risks more strategically and work toward a culture of shared cyber-risk ownership across the enterprise.

Check out our COVID-19 Resources for HR and Payroll guidance during the pandemic.

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