Impact of Covid-19 on cybersecurity
We are staying safe, how safe are our computers?
While we are staying home to stay safe, we are attending our classes online. Have you ever thought of how this could be a cyberthreat? Have you ever thought of how online classes are an attackers’ playground? Well, let’s read to find out more.
Physical safety is the most primitive form of security. Online safety on the other hand is a relatively new concept and most of us are still yet to understand the importance of online safety. All of us are constantly connected yet we don’t seem to be bothered that the internet we use for our classes, homework, and assignment is the same internet that cybercriminals use.
All of us were very quick to shift to online classes but we’ve forgotten to vet our systems to cyber threats. Some free remote learning tools and applications that we use also lack privacy and often feature malware. A very popular video conferencing app named Zoom has been susceptible to “Zoombombing” which refers to unauthorized users entering Zoom calls through credentials found online. These unauthorized users often disrupt virtual classes with insensitive content or even gather sensitive information.
Lack of security systems
While restrictions were imposed on us overnight, schools and universities failed to ensure robust security for their virtual learning platforms. There does not exist a cybersecurity incident response plan or communication channels to communicate during a crisis. The lack of training with regards to cybersecurity for teachers, students, and other administrative staff does not help either. This leaves us all very vulnerable to attackers.
Quite often the technology doesn’t fail but it is our lethargicness, convenience, or our reluctance by not using a complex password or failing to insert a multi-factor authentication.
Schools, universities, and other educational institutions need to proactively invest in robust cybersecurity systems and training if they are to continue with virtual learning. Else, we are all waiting for a cyberattack to unfold and it’s a matter of time.
63% rise in attacks amidst the pandemic
Once Covid-19 started spreading we all were bound to our homes, our parents worked from home and our classes shifted online too. However, this presented attackers a golden opportunity. According to a report by helpnetsecurity.com cybersecurity professionals reported a 63% rise in cyberattacks all related to the pandemic. This is nothing new for the world, criminals have always exploited national emergencies and unforeseen circumstances for their illicit gains.