After an arduous 2020, the new year has finally arrived. While rollout of the COVID-19 vaccines suggests life could return to normal later in 2021, it’s likely change will be slow in the near-term. This has implications for all aspects of our personal and professional lives, not the least of which is cybersecurity. The widespread shift to remote working has resulted in undetected security vulnerabilities, which will continue to impact businesses in the months ahead. That said, it’s not all bad news. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some select cybersecurity themes for 2021.
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Facebook filed a lawsuit today in Portugal against two Portuguese nationals for developing browser extensions that scraped user data from Facebook sites. "When people installed these extensions on their browsers, they were installing concealed code designed to scrape their information from the Facebook website, but also information from the users' browsers unrelated to Facebook — all without their knowledge," Jessica Romero, Facebook's Director of Platform Enforcement and Litigation, said today.
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Smart doorbell maker Ring is giving cybersecurity critics less to gripe about with the introduction of end-to-end encryption to many of its models. Ring products, which have been a juggernaut success with consumers, have faced a litany of harsh criticism from cybersecurity experts for what they say is a lack of attention to basic digital security. After a much anticipated response to critics, Ring this week rolled out end-to-end encryption for many of its home security camera products.
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Almost half of all phishing attacks designed to steal login credentials like email addresses and passwords by imitating well-known brands are impersonating Microsoft. Cybersecurity researchers at Check Point analyzed phishing emails sent over the last three months and found that 43% of all phishing attempts mimicking brands were attempting to pass themselves off as messages from Microsoft, a popular lure because of Office 365's wide distribution among enterprises.
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Google published a six-part report today detailing a sophisticated hacking operation that the company detected in early 2020 and which targeted owners of both Android and Windows devices. The attacks were carried out via two exploit servers delivering different exploit chains via watering hole attacks, Google said.
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Many pupils are starting their new school term from home rather than the classroom. For families with younger kids, home schooling is often the first time that their children have needed to use computers in earnest. Whether you're new to home schooling, going back to it after a break, or an old hand, it's worth taking a moment to ensure you're doing it securely. Taking the time to establish good security practices now will lay the foundations for safe IT use in the years to come.
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