With offices and schools now closed to non-essential workers, most of us are now operating remotely from our homes, often using personally-owned computers and laptops. We’re also relying on online services to stay in touch, work remotely and educate our children.
For some, this will all be very new, causing concern about online threats from cybercriminals and how to protect ourselves against them.
Crises affecting large numbers of people will often trigger a significant increase in fraudulent activity. Coronavirus is no different. Expect fake adverts for anything from vaccines to facemasks, links to sensational news articles and videos, bogus charity appeals and phishing emails claiming to be from travel, compensation and insurance companies. Fraudsters know that at times like these, people may be too concerned or preoccupied to spot that something isn’t quite right!
Over the last twelve months, there has been significant growth in cyber criminality in the form of high-profile ransomware and phishing campaigns. Breaches have resulted in personal data being leaked on a massive scale, leaving victims vulnerable to fraud. Although we’ve seen a shift in tactics whereby criminals are now targeting businesses more than individuals, we all need to be vigilant.
Cyber criminals will often seek to exploit human or security vulnerabilities in order to steal passwords, data or money directly. The most common cyber threats include:
In addition to these common threats, the sudden surge in the use of online videoconferencing services is likely to give rise to novel methods by which cybercriminals will hi-jack or hack these services.
Don’t become a victim
At CRMG, we recommend a few basic practices that can minimise the risk of falling victim to an online scam or malicious attack. Most cyber-attacks can be prevented by following these basic steps:
When meeting online or videoconferencing, apply the following good practices where you can:
In summary, good cyber security hygiene in the home is of paramount importance – particularly at a time when stress levels are raised. Applying the simple measures set out above will go a long way towards keeping you safe in cyberspace.
You can obtain more assistance from CRMG by visiting us at:
Phone: +44 20 3811 8727
As well as seeking help and advice from CRMG, there are other helpful websites publishing guidance such as:
If you think you’ve been victim to cyber crime or fraud or experience ransomware attacks you can contact the National Crime Agency direct who will provide help and guidance in getting you up and running again – they can be found here www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk.
For guidance from CRMG’s team of experts, please enquire at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Principal Consultant, CRMG
Industry Specialism: Government
Area of Expertise: Cyber Security Executive Management, Information Risk