Be Vigilant… Remote Workers and Devices are Vulnerable to Covid-19 Security Threats

Posted on Apr 17, 2020 in Jeff Nolte's Blog

Cybercriminals are looking to profit from pandemic fears by unleashing a fresh crop of malicious software and scams designed to defraud new victims. And with more people working at home connected to office systems, there is the very real possibility of malware infecting your business IT environment.

The threats include coronavirus-related “ransomware” attacks and phishing scams that try to lure you to websites offering vaccine kits, free hand sanitizer with your next purchase from a fake Amazon site, and spyware apps for your smartphone that offer to help you stay informed of the spread of coronavirus in real time.

As stimulus checks are issued, the number of scams will increase as criminals attempt even more clever ploys to defraud your employees and insert malware into their home-based computers and mobile devices.

People continue to be the weak link in any corporate security regime, so we recommend you pass along these essential tips.

8 Ways to Avoid Getting Scammed

  • Think before you click – Never open an attachment or click on a link from senders you don’t recognize.
  • Verify the source – If you get an email, text or phone call that asks you to urgently confirm personal or financial information, it’s fake.
  • Warn others – Talk to your loved ones, especially those less tech-savvy or the elderly, about the increased likelihood of scammers trying to defraud through email, text message, social media or even a phone call.
  • Practice password safety – Create long and complicated passwords (or passphrases), don’t use the same ones for all your online activity and change them every month or two.
  • Play defense – Install cybersecurity software on all devices and set it to auto-update to ensure you stay protected from the latest malware and other threats.
  • Watch out on WiFi – Even though we’re not going out much these days, don’t use free public WiFi as you’re more at risk compared to browsing on a private wireless network at home. Remain anonymous online by using a VPN (Virtual Private Network).
  • Shop securely – Stick with reputable retailers when giving out your credit card info and look for browser indicators that the site is secure (i.e., padlock and https). Regularly check your bank statements and credit card bills for anything suspicious.
  • Have a backup plan – Proactively back up important information on a regular basis. If you fall victim to a virus or ransomware, you can retrieve important files stored offline on a USB stick or external hard drive, or a secure cloud service.

Since many remote workers’ devices may not be included under the corporate security umbrella, raising awareness of potential threats will help protect both your employees and your business.

We’re here to help you get through this…
Contact CTS today: 800.787.4848 or jnolte@ctsmd.us.