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Pandemic Hacking Capitalizes on Cybersecurity Implementation Delays

January 11, 2021
A blue background with lighter blue binary code and a COVID-19 molecule with an Anonymus mask inside. representing pandemic hacking

Pandemic Hacking Was a Growth Industry in 2020

As we start totaling up the cost of the epic events of last year, it’s becoming apparent that 2020 wasn’t a good year for most industries. However, there was one industry that experienced explosive growth leading to record-setting profit increases across the board: cybercrime. Of course, that boom in pandemic hacking is a bust for businesses and only contributed to the challenges that companies faced last year.

Pandemic Hacking Started Early and Never Stopped

In a recent survey of 1,000 chief executives and VPs, researchers found that 90% of the enterprises that they surveyed experienced an increase in cyberattacks due to the pandemic. a shocking 98% of the businesses surveyed had incurred security challenges within just just the first two months. Those challenges look like they’re here to stay too – 85% of the survey respondents are certain that the negative impacts of the global pandemic on business cybersecurity will last for years to come.

Unexpected challenges came out of the woodwork for many businesses as the pandemic took hold, driving a rapid change to remote work and a rapid expansion of risk. The results of that sudden shift has left companies not only behind the curve on planned cybersecurity updates, but faced with a whole new set of challenges that come from supporting a new remote workforce indefinitely.

Sudden Shifts Created Sudden Opportunities for Cybercrime

It’s safe to say that most organizations were not prepared for a sudden jump to fully remote operations. Having to make that shift was also a huge hit to planned upgrades in many companies’ cybersecurity plans. The biggest impact was in throwing IT maintenance and growth plans offtrack – 93% of respondents said that their organizations had to stop or delay digital transformation and security projects to resource the large-scale transition to remote work.

Those delays led to a cascade effect that empowered cybercriminals to get a leg up on IT security professionals, powering an 85% overall increase in all categories of cybercrime for the year. Some of that increase can quickly be traced to failures in access point protection. Nearly 40% of the businesses surveyed noted that their planned upgrades to secure identity and access management were delayed in the rush to facilitate remote work, leaving the door open for cybercriminals.

Planning Doesn’t Always Equal Preparedness

CISOs and experts around the world agree – secure identity and access management is a top priority for organizations in 2021. That’s in no small way due to the impact of password-related cybercrime in 2020. Many companies suddenly discovered that their previous strategies and policies around controlling access to systems and data just didn’t work when everyone went remote, opening up security gaps that cybercriminals were quick to exploit.

This came as a surprise to many organizations – 85% of the survey respondents said that before the pandemic began, they thought that their companies were prepared to support a remote workforce, and would be able to continue normal operations in IT planning and implementation. But that wasn’t the case. Identity and asset management (39%) and security strategy (39%), were the top areas disrupted as a result of the rapid implementation of remote work, and ironically, that’s just when they were needed the most.

Get the Upgrade Without the Headache

One important takeaway from this survey is the importance of making access point control more regulated and uniform using a secure identity and access management solution. The cybercrime boom during the pandemic clearly exposed the fact that these days, simple password protection really no protection at all. It takes a more robust approach to access security to make sure that the right people have the right level of access to the right things – and only the right people.

That’s where Passly shines. Not only is Passly a cost-effective secure identity and access management solution, but it also deploys rapidly, providing protection in days, not weeks, including seamless integration with more than 1,000 common business apps. This empowers IT teams to quickly manage access to everything your employees need to get the job done remotely. SEE VIDEO OF PASSLY IN ACTION>>

Reduce Your Attack Surface in a Flash

Passly gives your IT team other reasons to cheer too. They’ll definitely thank you for eliminating the endless, exhausting “who has access to what” maintenance and response game by giving them the ability to safely store the credentials needed to conduct remote IT management in one central secured password vault. That also gives them an edge that is extremely valuable for teams responding to pandemic hacking incidents that could add your company to the list of data breach disasters.

They’ll be especially grateful about getting them off the dreaded password and permissions merry-go-round by adding single sign-on, helping them eliminate the endless series of vulnerabilities that are created by employees practicing bad password hygiene. Single sign-on LaunchPads for every user make it fast and easy to control permissions and access to systems and data. It gives a quick security boost too – by reducing the number of possible routes that cybercriminals could exploit, you reduce your attack surface.

Increase Overall Cybersecurity Effortlessly

An increase in cybercrime means that you’ll want an increase in protection against cyberattacks. Passly delivers that in 2 sensational ways.

  • Immediately boost your security by adding multifactor authentication, an expert recommended mitigation against all kinds of cybercrime including ransomware.
  • The added flexibility of single sign-on makes it a snap for IT security to quickly (and remotely) lockdown and quarantine a compromised account to mitigate damage in an emergency.

Remote work and its corresponding challenges will continue to be a huge part of every company’s operations well into 2021 and beyond. That means that pushing secure identity and access management with a dynamic solution like Passly to the top of your cybersecurity improvement queue is vital to keeping cybercriminals out of your systems and data.

Contact the experts at ID Agent today to learn more about the benefits that Passly brings to your business and get the access point protection that you need in place fast.