Even if the numbers vary from one report to the other, one thing is for certain: the year 2020 marks a record in counts of cyberattacks. Phishing attempts were exposed as soon as the first lockdown started in March 2020, and teleworking is being pointed out. We want to remind you of the necessary precautions.
The French cybercrime monitoring platform recorded a 400% increase in phishing attempts since the first week of lockdown in March 2020. The report by cybersecurity specialist VMWare Carbon Black accounts for a 238% increase in cyberattacks against financial institutions between February and April, and a nine-fold increase in attempts to extort personal data. Here in Belgium, the CCB – Center for cybersecurity in Belgium – declared already having received at the end of October more reports of cyberattacks and other incidents online than there were throughout 2019.
One thing is for certain: cyber criminals are not twiddling their thumbs! The important increase in internet traffic, linked to the pandemic, is putting pressure on the security of companies’ IT systems, regardless of the size of the company, small, medium or big. We would like to remind you of a few tips to follow in order to avoid any issues.
- Check that the operating system (Windows, Apple, Android, Linux) as well as the antivirus software on your employees’ hardware is up to date. This will limit computer security vulnerabilities.
- Use a VPN and make sure it is installed correctly on employees’ computers and yours. This allows them to connect securely to the corporate network.
- Set up a password change policy, ban those that are too simple (sequence of numbers or letters) and emphasise the use of upper- and lower-case letters, numbers as well as special symbols.
- Insist on the need to use several passwords, and not using the same one for anything personal (private Gmail account, social networks,…) and professional (Outlook, Microsoft).
- Sensitize your employees by reminding them of the basic precautions in terms of computer security, namely:
- not communicating passwords,
- not using your personal mailbox for professional affaires
- Being vigilant about emails from strangers or containing suspicious messages: contests, money, free vacations, but also so-called “official” messages about the coronavirus,
- Using a wired Internet connection and avoiding public WI-FI networks
- Not using external peripherals (USB key, external hard drive) that are not authorised by the IT department,
- Not giving access to your work computer to either relatives or children.
In addition to that, in order to support independents and SME’s during this critical period, Skyforce has decided to re-open its toll-free hotline. For a 60 minute toll-free diagnosis, you can contact the IT Helpdesk at 02/899.75.55.
Our experts help you implement necessary precautions such as VPN, and guide you on how to proceed in case of a cyberattack, intrusion attempt, data loss, or any other incident occurring on your corporate network. They are at your disposal from 9am to 7pm, Monday to Saturday.
Finally, Skyforce also developed its own VPN to ensure that its customers could also work securely from home. We therefore advise all of our users to use this VPN when working remotely, even when you are not physically close to our Cyberbox.