Cyber security risks are on the rise as more people work from home: Delhi Police issues warning | HT Tech

Cyber security risks are on the rise as more people work from home: Delhi Police issues warning

Proprietary corporate data is being accessed from laptops and home PCs that in most cases do not have the same level of firewall and security as in-office setups

By: HT CORRESPONDENT
| Updated on: Mar 28 2020, 21:14 IST
With people working from home proprietary corporate data is being accessed from laptops and home PCs that in most cases do not have the same level of firewall and security as in-office setups
With people working from home proprietary corporate data is being accessed from laptops and home PCs that in most cases do not have the same level of firewall and security as in-office setups (Pixabay)

As most people work from home amid the coronavirus pandemic, cyber security threats are also on the rise. So much so that the Delhi Police issued a warning today with a list of simple dos and don'ts to help protect your data and your system.

"Companies, large and small, will be impacted due to ramifications of work from home, as this will lead to cyber security risk concerns. Proprietary corporate data is being accessed from laptops and home PCs that may not have the same level of firewall and security as in-office setups,"said Deepak Bhawnani, CEO at Alea Consulting.  

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"Management and IT managers will subsequently need to reassess the risk to their data, and proactively evaluate their data loss prevention processes, as this can impact their reputation going forward," he added.

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Cybercriminals are also exploiting the general fear about the pandemic through email scams, ransomware attacks etc.

Palo Alto Networks' Regional Vice President for India & SAARC Anil Bhasin said - "Cyber-criminals have been exploiting fears around the COVID-19 outbreak to conduct email scams, phishing and ransomware attacks. These emails and messages entice users to open malicious attachments by offering more information related to the COVID-19 situation but contain malicious files masked under the guise of links, pdf, mp4 or docx files."

With employees working from home, cyber security threat multiplies, says Debasish Mukherjee, VP, Regional Sales APAC at SonicWall.

"These are exactly the times when hackers get creative with their malicious intent of hacking into devices and stealing data," Mukherjee said.

Also Read: Hackers are preying on fears of Covid-19, say cyber security experts

Trishneet Arora, Founder & CEO of TAC Security pointed out that the low-security standards of home Wi-Fi systems are a serious threat for the cybersecurity sector at the moment with data of millions of people at stake.

"A few isolated incidents of cyber crimes have already been seen with unsafe links leading to theft of sensitive data. For example, people are offering fake maps that show infected users, this requires the person to download software to generate fake maps, in turn making it a security concern," Arora said.

Palo Alto Networks'Bhasin was of the view that "employers need to prepare employees who are unaccustomed to remote working to navigate the challenges involved".

"This can be done through an educational framework to teach staff how to identify and avoid risks, as well as outline the clear procedures to follow in case of a cyber security incident," he added.

Also Read: Hackers using COVID-19 specials, discounts to sell malware on dark web

Among other precautionary measures, he said that "sensitive systems and data should also be restricted where possible, with access reviewed and granted to essential teams only. It should also be ascertained that workdevices encrypt data at rest and are able to protect data on the device if it is lost or stolen".

Michael Sentonas, Global CTO of CrowdStrike said that crisis management and incident response plans need to be executable by a remote workforce. "A cyber incident that occurs when an organization is already operating outside of normal conditions has a greater potential to spiral out of control," he said.

Also Read: Mass move to work from home in coronavirus crisis creates opening for hackers, say cyber experts

He added that effective remote collaboration tools, including out-of-band conference bridges, messaging platforms and productivity applications, can allow a dispersed team to create a "virtual war room" from which to manage response efforts.

"At this moment, there is a need for the cyber security industry to be more dynamic and responsive than ever before," said Arora.

(With agency inputs)

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First Published Date: 28 Mar, 21:14 IST
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