Approx. read time : 6 min
The year 2020 has witnessed one of the most deadly pandemics. Under such critical and sensitive circumstances, the right information and the premium quality products to restrict the spread of the pandemic are essential.
However, as the economies are slowing down, and the people around the world are checking their movements, the pace of cybercrime has increased. Plenty of sources have revealed that the pandemic has substantially increased the number of registrations of fraudulent websites.
Here is how you can keep yourself out of the grip of such cyber crimes:
People with bad intentions from across the world are using this time of emergency to their advantage. Consequently, the number of cybercrime cases is also going up day by day. People are spending more time online these days. Hence, the chance of falling prey to malicious activities is also increasing alarmingly. Here is what you should do to stay away from such fake websites and operations.
Hundreds of entities have registered new websites during the pandemic. Most of these websites have words like “Covid”, “Coronavirus” as their keywords. On thorough research, experts have found that plenty of these websites sell fake products such as masks, vaccines, medicines and as such. All of these items are crucial for Covid-19 treatment, and any discrepancy in these can be fatal for the human race. Hence, it is of paramount importance that these websites get restricted from selling such counterfeits.
Some of these websites are also delivering improper and confusing information regarding the pandemic. The right information is a must during any emergency if people get wrong or fabricated information, mass confusion is created.
Out of such situations, further troubles crop up. Hence, the spread of these fake websites must be restricted. If you have come across any such new website recently, check twice before believing in any of its goods and services. Especially if the website promises products and services too good to be true, be cautious about its authenticity.
Cyber crimes during the pandemic have gone up to a great extent which leaves no room for reluctance from your end. There is no harm in buying online, but make sure that you are buying from a protected and an authorized website. You can check if the website is safe to browse through the SSL padlock icon and if the website is denoted through https://. If you own a website, make sure to install an SSL certificate on it so that all the transactions and information exchanged on your website is encrypted.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has already declared the pandemic to be an infodemic as well. Hence, you have no reason to trust any piece of information online without checking the same with reliable sources.
Phishing is one of the most common fraudulent activities the cybercrime world has seen. The majority of the time, the source of phishing remains emails. However, messages, Whatsapp and other applications can also be a source of phishing in many cases. The offenders mostly communicate with the victims directly through these devices and send embedded links.
Once an individual clicks on the link, it asks for personal information or for some login details. If you share any critical information on this link, you might have to face grave consequences. These criminals generally pose themselves as real business houses to convince the people to share their information.
Ever since the outbreak of the pandemic, millions of people are accessing the health care systems every now and then, the cybercriminals have taken complete advantage of the same. They have increased their phishing activities linking to the health care websites.
You may receive such links or emails, asking for your personal information or login credentials. However, do not disclose any information without confirming the authenticity of the sender. The best would be to consider all such emails as fraudulent in the first place. If the name associated with the communication source seems reliable to you, cross-check the same before disclosing any of your details.
In general authentic organizations do not ask for such details and personal information from you under any circumstance. Hence, if you get any mail enquiring about your details, suspicion should be the first thing to strike your mind. To be sure of the credibility of the email, check the real website of the company and match the logo and the name. Mostly, the counterfeit ones contain some imperfections in design or text.
Remote Work Vulnerabilities
Working remotely has become indispensable for the changed situation. Probably, the pandemic has integrated most people into this culture of remote working than ever. While remote working practice comes with several advantages, the challenges are also not hard to find. One of the biggest issues remains the security of data and information.
Plenty of people are working from home using their personal devices and network system. Both the device and the internet can be a threat to the data security for the company. The very practice of remote working that is making data security vulnerable.
If you are working from home lately, check the remote working protocol of your company thoroughly. Download all the necessary software and protection tools to ensure the utmost safety of the data you are working with. Also keep the VPNs, antivirus, and firewalls updated as much as possible. Use strong passwords to protect your Wi-Fi facilities.
Apart from keeping the device and the network facilities protected, also keep an eye on the emails. Besides phishing emails, you can also receive unexpected and sudden communications from any of your colleagues, team leaders or even the CEO. You will surely feel like responding to such communication immediately.
However, do not hurry and make sure to cross-check if the person has really sent you an email or not. Often, the hackers communicate in disguise of the people you know well. Such moves enhance the chances to victimize people easily. Hence, leave no space for carelessness and take every step carefully.
If you receive any communication from the IT cell requesting you to download an application or software, check the same. Do not trust anything blindly and keep your senses open to skip the hassle.
No matter how careful and vigilant you remain, never leave any space for blind faith in your mind. Cross-check every piece of information, fortify your network system, and keep your devices safe. Avoid downloading random software and applications. Try to stick to one browser and get yourself an SSL certificate if you are an entrepreneur. A little caution can save you from several hazards.