•   Jason Simons
  •   Apr 04, 2020

Cybersecurity Alert: Heed the FBI’s New Warnings Around COVID-19 Scams

As we are living in unprecedented times, hackers are taking full advantage of the confusion around remote working and the coronavirus. Here’s how to stay safe, according to the FBI.  

Cybersecurity Alert Coronavirus

Businesses and individuals across the country are falling prey to scams that have been quickly hatched by cybercriminals in the wake of the COVID-19 emergency. With companies sending workers home to connect remotely and the fast-moving news cycle, the atmosphere of confusion and fear is the perfect petri dish that is allowing online criminal activity to grow at an accelerated rate. The FBI recently warned Americans about the dangers associated with activities that many perform daily: checking email, viewing and responding to SMS text messages, clicking links in emails and more. Unfortunately, these simple actions can have unexpected consequences with hackers developing devious methods aimed to inject ransomware and malware into your systems. Between the dangers of having children online more than ever before to protecting your business from infiltration and a ransomware attack, here are the top risks to Americans during this unusual turn of events.

No Cures for Coronavirus

Everything from fake airline refunds to fake coronavirus cures is making the rounds with companies via email, with scammers encouraging individuals to click links to order fake testing kits or take advantage of government stimulus checks. What’s truly frightening is that these criminals are becoming crafty enough that their fraudulent emails are not as easy to spot as they have been in previous years. Spoofed email return addresses and masked links can make the communications appear to be completely legitimate, only to lead you to download malware directly to your machine.

Be Diligent About Cyber Hygiene

FBI Special Agent in Charge Matt DeSarno shares: “If we are as diligent about our cyber hygiene as we are about our personal hygiene right now, it will make it very difficult for our adversaries to steal our money.” With cybercriminals out to prove their ability to break into your business and personal accounts, these steps will help protect your organization:

  • Ensure that your teams are using strong passwords
  • Update and upgrade anti-malware and antivirus software solutions
  • Offer refresher training for staff members on cybersecurity
  • Enhance current firewall and web-based filtering options to reduce the number of attacks that make it to team members
  • Invest in active monitoring and notification protection for your wired and WiFi networks

Each step that you take helps to mitigate the risk of a cyberattack on your organization.

Protecting your organization is not a one-time solution, it’s something you must consider every day and in each interaction with your employees. Keep cybersecurity top of mind when you work with the professionals at ICS Business Technology Services to redefine IT and telecommunications infrastructure for your remote staff, contractors, vendors and customers. We provide IT managed support and business telephone services for organizations of all sizes throughout the San Antonio, Houston and Austin areas, helping ensure that your company is ready to overcome the risks facing modern organizations. Contact the ICS technical experts at (281) 962-3058 for Houston, (210) 305-4087 for San Antonio or (512) 253-4135 for Austin companies to schedule your complimentary initial consultation.