Weekly News Roundup March 16 - 20, 2020

Posted on by Kacy Zurkus

Hopefully, dear readers, you’ve all been able to enjoy a few laughs at some of the home-schooling memes making waves this week as parents struggle to balance a work-from-home schedule while tending to the needs of kids who are home from school. Many families around the globe are hunkered down in an effort to flatten the curve. Naturally, with millions of people practicing physical distancing, human beings are relying on social media platforms to stay connected.

As a result, cybersecurity teams are under increased stress as they deal with the challenges of an increased remote workforce. All the while, hackers are also leveraging social media to spread their disinformation campaigns and doubling down on phishing scams. According to Bloomberg headlines, State media and pro-Kremlin actors in Russia are distributing fake news in a campaign, “designed to exacerbate confusion, panic and fear.” In response, the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre has ramped up its efforts to hunt down these threats, and companies like Cyber Risk Aware are stepping up to the challenge and offering free COVID-19 phishing tests for businesses.

Let’s take a look at other cybersecurity headlines from this week.

Mar. 20: In an effort to educate the influx of remote workers, the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre issued data protection guidance, encouraging employers to develop written documents for all existing applications as well as new software that staff will be using.

Mar. 19: Politico reported, “The Trump administration wants at least four agencies to get tens of millions of dollars for cybersecurity as part of its $48 billion coronavirus emergency funding request, but it inexplicably does not seek money for that purpose for CISA, the agency responsible for providing cybersecurity tools to federal agencies.”

Mar. 19: “The cybercrime groups behind two of the most prolific ransomware threats have issued statements that they will not attack healthcare and medical targets during the coronavirus crisis,” according to Forbes.

Mar. 19: VPN providers have seen a significant spike in usage, with Atlas VPN reporting “an increase in traffic of anywhere from 9% to 112% in the past week in the seven countries hardest hit outside of China: Italy, Iran, South Korea, Spain, Germany, France, and the United States,” according to Dark Reading.

Mar. 18: HBO released a new documentary titled “After Truth: Disinformation and the Cost of Fake News” that examines the consequences of disinformation campaigns.

Mar. 17: CSO Online compiled a list of “10 security companies that have made bold moves in the past year and have taken power positions within the cybersecurity community.”

Mar. 16: Threatpost reported, “An attack that uses homographic characters to impersonate domain names and launch convincing but malicious websites takes minutes and a bare modicum of skill—while reaping high rates of success in luring victims, according to an independent researcher.”

Kacy Zurkus

Senior Content Manager, RSA Conference

RSAC Insights

Blogs posted to the RSAConference.com website are intended for educational purposes only and do not replace independent professional judgment. Statements of fact and opinions expressed are those of the blog author individually and, unless expressly stated to the contrary, are not the opinion or position of RSA Conference™, or any other co-sponsors. RSA Conference does not endorse or approve, and assumes no responsibility for, the content, accuracy or completeness of the information presented in this blog.

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