With millions of Americans working from home because of the coronavirus pandemic, information technology departments may be too stretched to keep networks updated. Virtual private networks have been overloaded with remote workers. Shuttered nonessential businesses are also easy targets.
Federal officials warn that hackers are likely to take advantage of this environment to attack organizations.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation warns that phishing scams targeting businesses are on the rise. The World Health Organization reported that hackers recently created a malicious site that spoofed the WHO's website.
Although some cybercriminals will attack with ransomware, other breaches may not be discovered for weeks or months. Well-organized cybercrime organizations and nation-states may lie dormant as they learn more about the environment and search the compromised network for valuable data, including bank account numbers, trade secrets, and personally identifiable information.
Hackers may steal information inconspicuously little-by-little or wait until an organization is most vulnerable to attack all its assets at once. Cybercriminals may even use stolen nonpublic information to profit on the stock market. David Uberti "Coronavirus Cybersecurity Fallout Might Not Be Felt for Weeks or Longer" wsj.com (Mar. 25, 2020).