As employees around the globe adjust to working from home, hackers are working to steal sensitive company information.
These cybercriminals know that most personal computers do not have the same security features as a company network.
Cybercriminals are profiting from uncertainty about coronavirus and the relative uncharted territory of remote-office communications amid this unprecedented global pandemic.
Maybe you think that someone cracking your password isn’t much of a threat, but the issue definitely affects your entire company.
Think of your password as the key to your company’s front door — once a hacker has your log-in name and password, they can impersonate you to access your computer network or commit other types of online fraud. After all, a cybercriminal’s goal is to get into your corporate computer system by whatever means possible.
If you have been asked to work from home during the next few weeks or months, here are important tips to remember as you spend more time inside and online:
✔ Safeguard log-in credentials. Be leery of any emails from your company’s HR department requesting your log-in credentials. Certainly use the same caution across the board anytime you’re asked for your bank account information, passwords, or Social Security number, as this request could be coming from a cyber-criminal. A legitimate business will never call you or email you directly for this information!
✔ Double- and triple-check before you open attachments. Don’t click on email links or attachments from anyone you don’t recognize. The links or attachments might have ransomware, which can infect your device and steal your information. But even when you do know the sender, take an extra few seconds to ensure that nothing seems off — does the sender’s email have obvious misspellings or bad grammar that seem atypical? Does the message not seem like something your friend or colleague would typically say overall? If so, it’s possible your friend has been hacked.
✔ Spot domain spoofing. When possible, input website domain names yourself versus clicking on a website on a search engine or via an email. A spoofed URL is a common form of phishing in which an attacker appears to use a company’s domain to impersonate a company or one of its employees.
✔ Turn on auto updates. Up-to-date antivirus software can definitely halt the spread of malware — remember to use this on your personal computer as well as smartphone and/or tablets.
✔ Use a VPN. If your company doesn’t already offer its employees a virtual private network, now would be a great time to start using one because it encrypts everything you do online. A VPN like CyberGhost provides you with a secure way to access the internet and do your work from home, all while keeping your connection private. A VPN will also hide your IP address, making it impossible to be tracked online.
✔ Stay on sites that use HTTPS encryption. In general, you want to avoid any website that starts with “http://” — it means there is no encryption without the extra “S”. In fact, using CyberGhost as your VPN will force all your web traffic to HTTPS pages when available.
✔ Look out for certificate errors. This sort of error warning is a potential red flag that something is wrong with the website.
✔ Be on high alert. While it’s always wise to be cautious, during a pandemic you must take extra steps to avoid falling victim to online fraud. Look for anything that seems unusual, suspicious, or raises any doubt in your mind — better safe than sorry!