We talk about cybercrime in the post-Covid-19 world with Paolo Ardemagni, one of the greatest know-how in the IT security market in Italy, being busy since the dawn, and today is Senior Regional Director
Let’s start with what happened to users. Covid-19 forced millions of people to stay home, some permanently (due to dismissal) and others to work remotely.
This rapid transformation seems destined to become almost permanent, so that some of the largest companies in the digital world, such as Twitter, Facebook, Shopify, have already stated that they will allow employees who want to, to continue in smart working.
Large companies have already planned to reduce office space by 50% over the next three years, encouraging 80,000 employees to work mainly from home. Currently, more than 40% of Americans work from home and, according to surveys, in the coming years, companies will allow some or all employees to continue working remotely.
The fact that millions of people work from home offers hackers a huge attack surface. It is not easy to provide the same security levels to all employees operating outside the (relatively) secure perimeter of their office and local loop.
In addition, employees may over time give in to the temptation to use (or have others use) the company laptop to surf the internet for personal purposes, which increases their vulnerability to cyber crime.
The first trend: unfortunately, work at home will continue to be a major safety issue for companies, unless it invests in maintaining a good level of safety for employees, regardless of their location.
The cybercrime in the post-Covid-19
Aerdemagni points out that cybercrime exploded during the Covid-19 pandemic. The FBI’s Internet Crime Complain Center (IC3) reported a 300% increase in cyber crime complaints. Traffic to hack sites and information and tutorial searches related to hacking increased exponentially in 2020 indicating that many
Although the overall number of cybercrimes is increasing, some segments are more affected by this trend than others.
For example, the demand for stolen credit cards has fallen during the pandemic, while traditional scams (advertising of counterfeit or inadequate medical equipment and medicines, dubious investment opportunities and so on) are net As for the business world, cyber criminals seem to be more daring, employ much more aggressive techniques and prefer quick monetization options than long-term profits.
The second trend: the rise of cyber crime will not stop, hackers will increasingly target businesses with aggressive malware and custom ransomware designed to steal data and damage activities.
More cyber police officers
Authorities are aware of the situation and, to mitigate these threats, they are intensifying cooperation between nations, for example with the Partnership Against Cybercrime of the World Economic Forum.
This initiative was launched in April 2020 to explore ways to expand public-private collaboration and combat cybercrime globally. In addition, law enforcement is making greater efforts to simplify the reporting of cybercrime.
For example, the UK National Cyber Security Center has provided a dedicated email address for reporting online scams that, in less than 2 months, has been used to file over 1 million complaints. The UK is also using more active means, such as the launch of a paid online advertising campaign aimed at young people looking for cybercrime services to offer them legal alternatives.
The third trend: IT police operations conducted by national and international agencies will be affected by better collaboration and efficiency, so more cyber criminals will end up in the hands of justice.
Aid for behavioural artificial intelligence
According to Ardemagni, unprecedented situations have occurred in the last year. Although it is premature to estimate the long-term effect of Covid-19 on our way of life, it is very likely that this period has led to the greatest change in the work landscape from the invention of the modern office and, consequently, has greatly increased the vulnerability of organizations and
There is also good news, however: law enforcement is taking action in the face of the scale of the problem and improving cooperation, while businesses must realise that the situation is not outside their control.
Ardemagni needs to manage the risk, implement an effective behavioural artificial intelligence solution that can prevent, detect and neutralize known and unknown threats and force cyber criminals to seek earnings elsewhere.