Check Point: the coronavirus pandemic has created ideal conditions for cyberattacks

Check Point experts, together with Dimensional Research, interviewed IT and information security professionals from all over the world that work in organizations with more than 500 employees. At Check Point concluded that the coronavirus pandemic created ideal conditions for cyberattacks.

The main topic of the survey was the difficulties that specialists face due to the coronavirus pandemic, as attackers are already actively exploiting these topics and the new opportunities that it opens to them.

For example, some attackers spread fake coronavirus android tracker, and, say, Maze operators attacked medical company, which is testing vaccine for COVID-19.

The results of the survey showed that cybercriminals are actively using the changes that are happening now in the organization of working process in majority of companies, and are intensifying their attacks.

“71% of cybersecurity professionals report an increase in the number of threats and attacks since the start of the pandemic. The majority of respondents (55%) report phishing attempts as the main threat. Second place belongs malicious sites that allegedly contain information and tips about coronavirus (32%). Next up is an increase in the number of malware (28%) and ransomware (19%)”, — according to Check Point researchers.

Another 95% of respondents said that they encountered additional information security problems due to the spread of COVID-19. Basically, it includes difficulties in managing remote work, which many companies and organizations have contacted because of widespread quarantine measures.

Three main problems in this area:

  • difficulties in ensuring secure remote access for employees (56% of respondents noted this);
  • the need for scalable solutions for remote access (55%);
  • Employees, which work from home, use highly controversial IT products: software, tools and services that are unverified and unapproved by IT specialists (47%).

Many experts believe that security problems will continue in the coming months. For example, 61% of respondents are concerned about security risks associated with the emergency transition of most companies to remote work. 55% of respondents believe that remote access security needs to be improved. Another 49% are concerned about the need to improve workstation security.

“Cybercriminals always strive to use the agenda for their attacks. The coronavirus pandemic created ideal conditions for attackers: most organizations work in new, unusual conditions, the news devoted only to the topic of a pandemic, – says Check Point Software Technologies representative, — Organizations need to use comprehensive protection against all types of cyber threats: it must provide a reliable connection between corporate networks and remote devices of employees, support collaboration between different groups of employees, and make it as productive as possible.”

The results of the survey only confirmed the recent findings of Check Point that the number of “coronavirus” attacks and their associated domains is growing at a tremendous speed.

For example, the average number of new domains registered from late February to mid-March was almost 10 times higher than in previous weeks. Moreover, domains associated with coronavirus are found 50% more often than others.

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James Brown

Technology news writer and part-time security researcher. Author of how-to articles related to Windows computer issue solving.

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