Phishing attacks are making a splash as the top cybersecurity threat of 2020. Here’s why they’re such a powerful lure right now and our best advice on how to ride out the tide safely.
Fishing may not always be in season, but phishing is – and phishing attacks are the biggest fish in the pond in the 2020 cybersecurity threat landscape. This National Go Fishing Day, take some time to relax in the sun, enjoy the salt air, and head offshore to catch a white marlin or a fat tuna – but make sure you’re not the one getting caught by cybercriminals who are out phishing too.
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You’d think that everyone who uses a computer would be so aware of phishing by now that it would be passé. But that’s not the case – in fact, phishing attacks have increased by more than 600% since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. This dramatic increase is the result of a few key factors combining to make phishing more pernicious than ever.
Three Factors Make Phishing a Whale of a Problem
- The easy availability of personal information on the Dark Web empowers bad actors. 60% of the information available now on the Dark Web is dangerous to enterprises. New information from major data breaches is pouring into the Dark Web every day to fuel every kind of phishing including precisely targeted spear phishing attacks against corporate executives and administrators.
- The thirst for COVID-19 information added more opportunity for success. Google estimated that in March 2020 alone, it blocked 18 million COVID-19 scam emails a day. At a time when the world was hunting for information, cybercriminals were able to capitalize on it with millions of malicious mails, links, maps, and attachments – even from major sources like the World Health Organization.
- The sudden shift to remote work left staffers unprepared for new threats. Just as these two threats began to combine, everyone was suddenly working remotely – and remote workers are more likely to fall for phishing attacks. It once a common reason why companies balked at remote work, but with no choice but to conduct business remotely or shut down, most companies chose the lesser evil. That little bit of extra opportunity may be the deciding factor in why phishing is today’s biggest threat.
Shore Up Your Defenses Against Phishing Attacks Now
Even as we begin the post-pandemic recovery, phishing isn’t slowing down. COVID-19 email scams continue to proliferate. A new phishing attempt is made every 39 seconds. It’s not just the rank and file staff that falls victim to phishing either. The number one cause of a data breach is still human error, but 90% of data breaches started as a phishing attack that forced that error.
Improve Your Training To Keep Your Staff On the Lookout for Trouble
The absolute most effective way to quickly improve your phishing defense is to commit to high-quality training using a variety of methods and testing tools to keep your users ready for new threats. Investing in high-quality phishing training and testing is a smart way to save money too because one breach can cost a fortune – the estimated global average cost of a data breach today is $3.9 million.
Phishing is a universal menace, so BullPhish ID includes 27 non-English training videos available in 7 languages. We’ve also added COVID-19 scam testing and training content, and we’ll keep updating the training and testing tools in BullPhish ID as new threats emerge.
Don’t just take our word for it – see how BullPhish ID effectively and efficiently trains staffers to fight phishing in this 10-minute technical demonstration video.
Let us help you make sure that your cybersecurity is ship-shape. Contact ID Agent today to learn more about BullPhish ID, the innovative yet cost-effective phishing training and testing solution that’s perfect for today’s remote workforce.