As if the coronavirus isn’t giving people enough to worry about, there’s another type of threat that’s going viral: cybercrime. Hackers are taking advantage of the fear and confusion surrounding the pandemic to target companies and their employees, especially since many of them are working remotely. Here are some of the top tactics members of the digital underworld are using, and how a managed IT provider can help you keep two steps ahead of them.
One especially popular strategy for hackers involves targeting government entities and organizations dedicated to research and healthcare. Shady characters disseminate coronavirus-themed emails that appear to contain information about (nonexistent) cures or pandemic statistics. Clicking links or opening attachments in these messages invite an onslaught of ransomware and other forms of malware that invade networks and expose sensitive data. Employees should be aware, too, that these messages are sometimes crafted as if the sender is the HR department of their own company. Fraudulent messages are usually directed toward a general audience and rarely address recipients by name.
Fake Flight Refunds
Travel restrictions have led most airlines to cancel flights, and many would-be travelers are still waiting for refunds. Hackers are capitalizing on this to send unsuspecting airline customers “refund forms,” asking for their names and credit card numbers.
Using emails, phone calls, and texts, suspicious characters claim to be medical professionals contacting people on behalf of a legitimate organization, such as a local or state health department. Callers or senders ask recipients for social security numbers and other personal information.
A managed IT company provides a variety of services to identify vulnerabilities in your network and improve overall security.
IT consultants connect you with vendors and locate products and services that meet the unique needs of your company or organization. Going beyond traditional IT, tech specialists conduct a thorough analysis of your business to help you find business and technology solutions that are right for you.
IT professionals work with you to implement best practices to protect your network. They also monitor your network around the clock to intercept possible threats and ensure that your system is equipped with the most up-to-date firewalls and anti-virus software.
The sudden shift to remote work has created unforeseen network vulnerabilities. IT specialists make sure that your wireless access is secure, whether you are on-site or working from home.
Employees need to know how to recognize and report potential security threats. IT experts help you educate your staff about protecting sensitive information to minimize the likelihood of data breaches and other dangers.
Whether you’re preparing for a natural disaster or a pandemic, it’s critical to have a data recovery plan in place to maintain business continuity as much as possible during and after adverse events. IT professionals ensure your data is backed up, so it’s available whenever you need it.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, the first few months of 2020 have already seen a loss of $12 million in scams associated with the coronavirus. Furthermore, the realm of cybercrime is constantly evolving as hackers come up with new ways to infect networks with malware and steal private information. Even if you already manage some or all of your IT tasks in-house, partnering with an IT company ensures you are consistently complying with security protocols and regulations. Entrusting your cybersecurity needs to technology professionals frees you to focus on core business operations, allowing you to advance your enterprise, even during these uncertain times.