Has Covid-19 Fear Been Feeding a Cybercrime Pandemic?

Throughout the covid-19 pandemic, there’s been a certain strengthening in community spirit. The population has become united in a shared sense of fear. A culture of trust has grown on this universal vulnerability, as people take comfort in everyone being in the same …

GOTCHA! The nastier element of humanity – that bit that preys on trust and vulnerability – has pounced. Cybercriminals are gorging on the spoils of our mistakes.

Phishing for fear

Desperate for the latest updates about the coronavirus pandemic and the unprecedented economical crisis the world has been plunged into, people are being less cautious when it comes to opening emails and attachments. Forgetting what we’ve learnt about cybersecurity, we’ll now nibble indiscriminately on any old titbit of information.

In our Fortify247 Phishing Infographic, posted 15 June, you can see some examples of “phishy” emails. If you take a moment to look closely, it’s obvious that these emails are scams.

In the first example, supposedly from the UK government, the email begins,

“As a precaution measure …”

The word is precautionary

It goes on,

“… the government established new tax refund programme …”

I think they mean, “… the government has established a new tax refund programme …”

Okay, so it’s easy when you know it’s a scam, and you’re looking for clues. In fact, it would be easy if you just considered that it might be a scam. But at the moment, we’re too insecure to be mistrustful. That’s why it’s working for the bad guys.

Scattered herds

It’s true that there’s safety in numbers. When a company’s workforce is grouped together in the same premises, protective bonds are strong. For one thing, a receptionist and CCTV surveillance will detect a stranger in the building.

At the moment, however, when staff are working at home, isolated from the herd, each must be his or her own IT department. Group protocol and managerial monitoring aren’t part of working from home, and neither is expert technical assistance. There’s no doubt been quite a bit of winging it.

During the lockdown period, human error has certainly become a danger to IT systems. But human error isn’t solely to blame.

Artificial intelligence

Cybercriminals are developing increasingly sophisticated malware, which has the ability to evolve and become immune to antidotes, like the viruses that invade living organisms.

Artificial intelligence is now taking a leading role in cybersecurity. Machine learning technology enables antivirus software to detect new, evolving software and identify the threat. This artificial neural network (ANN) is modelled on the biological learning process.

Every day, new cybersecurity software is becoming available, and at Fortify247, we’re keeping up to date with the latest releases. If you’d like to talk to us about additional protection for your data, email [email protected] or give us a call on 01263 805 012.

Article produced for and on behalf of Fortify247 Ltd by Hazel @ Folio Copywriting

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