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Staying Safe Online During COVID-19

COVID-19 has changed how we do business. More employees than ever are working from home. Yet home networks are often less secure than those installed in company offices. Cybercriminals are taking advantage of increased online traffic and lax security protocols.

Proliferating alongside the novel coronavirus, many of today’s cyberthreats are focused on collecting personal data. Crooks set up websites that seem to be reputable sources of information. When users browse or click through these sites, they are prompted to divulge personal information, or unwittingly install malware.

Cybercriminals are adept at formulating phishing attacks that prey on our fears and insecurities. Given the recent economic upheaval, fraudulent online employment offers, unemployment benefit scams, and other hoaxes involving incentives such as business loans or free groceries have multiplied. Some scammers have also turned to online dating sites to cash in on our loneliness.

Though many of these threats target personal data, they impact employee productivity and have the potential to compromise business networks. Here are a few tips you can implement while working from home to better protect your employees and business:

  • Double check the email addresses messages are sent from. Make sure the sender's address matches the organization they say they represent.
  • Visit websites you know to be legitimate, and be wary of social media links or other avenues that lead to suspicious-looking or brand-new sources.
  • Always think twice before complying with any request for personal information. If you receive a request for any of your work-related passwords or login info, verify the legitimacy of the request with your manager or IT department before you divulge any information.
  • Look up charities before you donate, by searching for records on the IRS tax exemption site.
  • Create, and regularly recreate, strong passwords for all internet connected devices in the home. Doing this closes down network vulnerabilities and helps protect information, including business information, for employees working from home.

If you are interested in learning more about how to protect your employees and systems while teleworking, contact the computer scientists at XorFox for a free consultation.

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