Phishing in a Pandemic: 1 in 4 Americans Received a COVID-19 Related Phishing Email
Global survey finds overall email volume has increased 34% since last year, without a corresponding increase in cyber security protection
WATERLOO, ON, Sept. 22, 2020 /CNW/ -- OpenText™ (NASDAQ: OTEX), (TSX: OTEX) released a new report, COVID-19 Clicks: How Phishing Capitalized on a Global Crisis that sheds light on what people know about phishing attacks, what makes them click on a potentially malicious link and overall cybersecurity and cyber resilience habits in the time of COVID-19.
"With mass work from home, an influx of emails and a general 'always connected' attitude, there are more opportunities for cybercriminals than ever before," said OpenText CEO & CTO Mark J. Barrenechea. "We saw phishing URLs impersonating streaming services skyrocket during quarantine, as cybercriminals target people where they are most often. Businesses and consumers must prioritize cyber resilience and recognize that it is everyone's responsibility to protect their data."
The report suggests companies and consumers alike are falsely confident when it comes to cybersecurity. Nearly all respondents worldwide (95%) recognize that phishing remains a problem for companies and consumers, yet more than three quarters (76%) admit to opening emails from unknown senders, with over half (59%) blaming it on the fact that phishing emails look more realistic than ever before. The survey also revealed an opportunity for more security awareness education. Just 59% believe they know what to do to keep their data safe, with nearly one third (29%) admitting they've clicked on a phishing scam in the last year and one in five (19%) confirming receipt of a phishing scam related to COVID-19.
In the report, Dr. Prashanth Rajivan, assistant professor at the University of Washington, offered his perspective on how the COVID-19 pandemic and general increase in working from home could affect individuals' and businesses' cybersecurity status. "Like with distracted driving, working while doing other household chores or even watching TV seems easy enough when doing mundane tasks, such as email processing. But this type of distraction can also make people vulnerable. People might be less likely to properly notice and weigh the risks of a potential phishing message."
Read the full report COVD-19 Clicks: How Phishing Capitalized on a Global Crisis
Key Global Findings:
Phishing risks remain high, with more opportunities as the number of emails increase, workers log into corporate networks remotely and hacks look more real than ever before:
Companies and consumers are falsely confident when it comes to cyber safety. Despite knowing the risks, they're still taking chances with their data, and that's impacting their cyber resilience:
More education and prevention measures are critical to achieve cyber resilience, especially remote workers who need to access company resources from personal or shared public networks.
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SOURCE Open Text Corporation
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