As soon as the world switched to a lockdown due to Coronavirus Pandemic, many IT companies initiated their employees to work from home to keep their critical company operations going.
However, security researchers report that a new set of the challenge is created in remote working conditions as it gives a new vulnerable attack surface to hackers to exploit as they can launch phishing, malware and ransomware campaigns.
So, to counter such cyber threats on an effective note here’s a look at some basic pointers to follow while in a telecommute mode
Beware of Phishing– Ensure that you double-check the email address as soon as you receive an email from a sender who is unknown to you. If possible call that person to re-verify the details and never click on PDFS/OPen Docs and Excel sheet links unless you are sure that they are authentic and can be trusted. Also never reveal any sensitive details like CCV numbers, OTPs, passwords, tokens, and infrastructure details via email. And if necessary to do so, contact the sender on phone or through encrypted chat and verify the request before taking an action.
Download only apps that can be trusted– Whether it is a messaging or a video chatting app. Always make sure that you are downloading an app from a legitimate site as criminals often have the habit of duplicating websites and stack them with malware which eventually spies on our digital activities or spreads ransomware.
Lock the computer when you are out- Security researchers suggest that system users should never leave their computer idle without locking it up with a password. As someone from the house like children might click on the system files and spell trouble.
Keep your system updated- Microsoft has recently issued an advisory to all its Windows users to use legitimate software on their PCs as it helps companies offer them fixes to bugs at regular intervals.
Firewall- Never disables the firewall which is available by default with the operating system as it is essential to defend against all known cyber attacks.
Remote desktop services- Be careful with remote desktop services such as Teamviewer and grant permission only if it is needed. And it is better if you grant the access in your presence as it helps in keeping an eye on the entire activity.
Taping a webcam and muting the microphone- A couple of years ago, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg advised all PC users to tape their webcam and mute their microphone as it helps in keeping the PC activity private and prevents any leak or unnecessary sharing of embarrassing information.
Opt for Dynamic IP- If possible ask your ISP to provide a Dynamic IP address as it helps in keeping your network address safe from prying eyes- say on a daily or weekly basis. Also, make sure that you restart your router at least once or thrice on a weekly note.
Opt for secure browsing- To get the extra layer of security and privacy, opt for browsers like TOR or Firefox as it helps you from isolating your computer from the traditional web-based attacks.