A Proactive Cyber Workforce: Weekly Cybersecurity Brief

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About six months ago when the pandemic hit, society changed as we know it. Some changes were more apparent than others. One change that caught America by surprise was the heavy increase in cybersecurity threats. Security professionals immediately got to work in attempt to keep America’s systems secure. Now that we are almost half a year into the pandemic, cyber professionals have made significant strides brought upon from the pandemic.  Articles from Brooke Crothers from Fox News, Sissi Cao from the Observer and Microsoft’s CEE Multi-Country News Center give updates on the strides the cyber industry is making to combat the pandemic.

Many people have heard of phishing, but have not yet heard of the newest threat, known as vishing. Hackers who engage in vishing aim to illegally obtain money through the phone. First, the criminal often impersonates a company or service. Then they ask the user to enter contact information in a fake login portal leaving users vulnerable to vishing. Department of Homeland Security Cyber Agency, CISA, quickly identified the issue and released prevention methods to the public. The time from identification to remediation and recovery is critical. 

Last weekend we learned that Tesla whose stock has grown significantly during the pandemic successfully dodged a major cyber-attack. A Russian citizen came to the U.S. with the mission of stealing millions of dollars’ worth of information from the tech giant. Luckily, a faithful employee turned the criminal into Tesla preventing the hack. In return, the employee received $1,000,000 from Elon Musk. Tesla is a great example of a company that prioritizes educating employees about cybersecurity to keep systems protected.

The final way the cyber industry is combatting the pandemic is demonstrated by Microsoft’s recent report. The report shows that the pandemic has forced business leaders to rethink their cybersecurity staff and budget. More specifically, 58% of respondents said they plan to increase security budgets and 82% plan on hiring security staff. These stats show that the cyber workforce is having to become more sophisticated and more proactive every day.

All in all, the cyber industry has made huge strides when it comes to combatting the cyber crisis that was caused by the pandemic. Companies are not only identifying cybersecurity as a priority but are also beginning to invest resources in keeping their systems secure. The growth of the industry is apparent and here to stay.

Key Takeaways

“‘Vishing’ emerges as new cyber threat: What is it?” – Brooke Crothers, Fox News

  • Vishing is a new threat that aims to illegally obtain money through the phone. 
  • The criminal often impersonates a company or service, and then asks the user to enter a fake login portal. From there, the user enters their phone number making them vulnerable to vishing
  • The criminals then use spoofed phone numbers to call their targets

“Tesla Dodged a Russia Cyber Attack Thanks to a Brave Employee and the FBI” – Sissi Cao, Observer

  • A Russian citizen was recently arrested for attempting to steal millions of dollars’ worth of information from Tesla
  • A loyal Tesla employee turned in the hacker – in return he received $1,000,000
  • The hack was ultimately unsuccessful

New data from Microsoft shows how the pandemic is accelerating the digital transformation of cyber security” – Microsoft, CEE Multi-Country News Center

  • The pandemic has forced business leaders to rethink their cybersecurity staff and budget, says Microsoft report
    • 58% of respondents increased security budgets
    • 82% plan on hiring security staff
  • In the long term 40% of businesses plan to invest in cloud security, Data & Information Security, and anti-phishing tools

Sources:

https://news.microsoft.com/en-cee/2020/08/31/new-data-from-microsoft-shows-how-the-pandemic-is-accelerating-the-digital-transformation-of-cyber-security/

https://observer.com/2020/08/tesla-employee-fbi-prevent-russian-cyber-attack-nevada-gigafactory/

https://www.foxnews.com/tech/vishing-emerges-as-new-cyber-threat-what-is-it

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