Posted On 23 Jan 2021
There’s no doubt that 2020, for obvious reasons, has been a massive challenge of business, and for IT processes in particular. With so many people working from home, increasing amounts of work being stored in the cloud, absenteeism meaning sometimes inexperienced workers have had to cover for their seniors, and so on, security risks have increased exponentially. The insecurity created by so many workers linking over connections from their homes or in cafes is a particular concern. There are certain issues that should be watched out for by all IT professionals over the next year.
One of the prime concerns is that the weakness of home routers will be exploited by cyber criminals. It is already possible to purchase hacked routers online that, positioned and configured correctly, can access other, perfectly legal connections. If this is not addressed, remote workers can become an open portal into a company’s system. Virtual private networks (VPNs) can enable workers to connect securely with their workplace, but only if they are properly set up and continually updated.
Pandemic-specific cybercrime will continue to rise in 2021. One of the easiest ways for cyber criminals to gain access to systems is to persuade people to click on links or downloads that contain malware, Trojan horses, et cetera. With most people’s #1 concern at the moment being the coronavirus and how to fight it, cyber criminals will be launching a swathe of websites and links purporting to offer useful information but in fact designed to hack systems. Pharmaceutical companies and other healthcare organizations can expect to have to fight disruption in the form of hacking and particularly ransomware; in addition, international actors and maybe even nation states will be attempting to obtain details of vaccines and other treatment regimens.
Finally, every organization should think about how quickly they are embracing digital transformation. The pandemic has made many organizations accelerate their plans, which is in many ways a good thing in terms of embracing new cloud-based services and ensuring that organizations have the most efficient technological setups. However, hasty transformations can lead to glaring errors in security that malicious actors can easily exploit. Any organization seeking to rapidly upgrade its homeworking capacity should consider employing security experts to ensure that there are no loopholes available. This might cost a company in the short term, but the price will be minimal in comparison to what they would have to pay if their system vulnerabilities are exploited.