On 11 March 2020, the World Health Organisation declared the outbreak of COVID-19 a pandemic, and the emergency has continued to escalate.
Businesses around Australia are seeking ways to protect their staff from COVID-19.
Working from home
Instructing staff to work remotely may be one way of minimising the spread of the virus. However, remote work arrangements can have security implications and cybercriminals may attempt to take advantage of that. We are already seeing COVID-19 scams being transmitted via text messages. See Emergence’s LinkedIn for more information.
The cyber risks of flexible work arrangements could include malware infection, unauthorised access, data security, and insecure devices used by staff.
It’s important that businesses and their staff ensure remote access to business networks is secure, so they aren’t vulnerable and business information isn’t exposed.
How do I stay safe?
Ensuring good cyber security measures now is the best way to address the cyber threat.
Consider implementing these proactive strategies:
- Review your business continuity plans and procedures
- Ensure your systems, including virtual private networks and firewalls, are up to date with the most recent security patches
- Implement multi-factor authentication for remote access systems and resources (including cloud services)
- Ensure your staff and stakeholders are informed and educated in safe cyber security practices, such as identifying socially engineered emails and messages
- Ensure your data is backed up daily and automatically
- Increase your cyber security measures in anticipation of the higher demand on remote access technologies by your staff, and test them ahead of time
- If you use a remote desktop solution, ensure it is secure
- Ensure staff working from home have physical security measures in place. That minimises the risk of information being accessed, used, modified or removed from the premises without authorisation
- Ensure your work devices, such as laptops and mobile phones, are secure
- Ensure you are protected against Denial of Service threats.
Need more help?
The Australian Signals Directorate’s Australian Cyber Security Centre has produced some excellent advice to help businesses stay secure from cyber threats while managing remote workforces. Click here for more information or go to: www.cyber.gov.au/news/cyber-security-essential-when-preparing-covid-19.
Coverage under Emergence’s cyber policy
The Emergence cyber policy was designed with working remotely in mind. The policy covers IT infrastructure owned, leased, rented or licensed (for example, cloud or SaaS solutions) by the insured and used in conducting the insured’s business.
That means if a cyber event emanates from a computer or laptop or other device being used by the insured’s employees at home, the policy will respond to cover the cyber event for response costs, loss of profits and any potential litigation that may arise.
If any of your Emergence insureds’ suffer a cyber event, immediately contact the Emergence incident response hotline on 1300 799 562 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have questions about coverage provided under Emergence’s cyber policy and what it means for your clients, please contact us at: email@example.com.
Be at your best with Emergence.