Happy Friday and Valentine's Day! Here are nine great industry news stories from this week you may have missed.
Stay safe online this Valentine's Day
Love is in the air today and online scammers are on the prowl to take advantage of the romantics. While this CSO article was originally published in 2018, its message still holds true: not every web user has their heart in the right place. From navigating dating sights to understanding which e-cards are okay to open, this article breaks down how the darker side of the web can fool people on Valentine's Day.
Ransomware Attacks Grow, Crippling Cities and Businesses
Cities cripple. Facilities close. Hospitals turn patients away.
Each of these incidents are the result of ransomware attacks. According to The New York Times, hackers are locking people out of their networks and are demanding big payments to get back in. The frequency of ransomware attacks — among the scariest and most costly online assaults — has been hard to pinpoint because many victims quietly pay off their attackers without notifying the authorities. However, new data shows just how common and damaging these attacks have become. In 2019, 205,280 organizations submitted files that had been hacked in a ransomware attack — a 41 per cent increase from the year before.
Coronavirus-themed emails used by cybercriminals to spread malware
To make matters worse regarding the recent coronavirus outbreak, criminal groups are exploiting fears over the illness in an email phishing campaign directed at the global shipping industry. Global News has reported the new campaign uses emails with bogus Microsoft Word attachments that are designed to install a type of malware known as AZORult. AZORult has been around since at least 2016 and can be used to install ransomware, which is designed to lock legitimate users out of their computer systems until — surprise, surprise — a ransom is paid.
Best Practices: Avoiding a Spam or Phishing Attack
The number of spam and phishing attacks are on the rise, and your best defense is awareness. This week on their blog, Ricoh Canada shared the most common phishing attacks and best practices to avoid getting caught. These include bad files sent from sharing services, emails that appear to be sent from a known contact and even worse, emails that appear to be sent from someone your trust. Check out their top three best practices to stay safe here.
"Robot Lawyer" Plan to Fight Big Business
DoNotPay calls itself the "world's first robot lawyer." The app uses chatbot technology and AI screening to provide 150 legal services. Among the most popular: contesting parking tickets, cancelling subscriptions and memberships after the free trial and even step-by-step instructions to sue someone. DoNotPay also helps search documents for legal loopholes, jump wait times on customer service phone lines and schedule DMV appointments in the States. Learn all the details here.
Use of facial recognition technology by police growing in Canada
Canadian privacy advocates are calling on all levels of government to create specific regulations since some departments in the country have begun using facial-recognition technology. At present, Calgary police regularly use it, Toronto police have tested it out, and Edmonton and Saskatoon are considering it. Find out everything you need to know about the new crime-fighting tech on CBC.
Boost Your Team’s Data Literacy
We’ve entered a golden era of data. And, according to the Harvard Business Review, you don’t have to be Walmart or IBM to build a data lake in your company — that opportunity is now available to every company through cloud-based systems at modest cost. While we have access to mass amounts of data, the problem is not many of us are very good at interpreting and making sense of it. Learn about the practical solutions you can apply to boost your organization's data capabilities here.
Deep-learning cybersecurity solution can suss an attack before it happens
The worlds of artificial intelligence and cybersecurity have become deeply entwined in recent years, as organizations work to keep up with — and ideally block — increasingly sophisticated malicious hackers. A startup has built a deep learning solution which they claim can both identify and stop even viruses that have yet to be identified. The company, Deep Instinct, has already raised $100M USD in funding. While there is already a large profusion of AI-based cybersecurity tools on the market today, Tech Crunch notes that Deep Instinct takes a critically different approach because of its use of deep neural network algorithms, which essentially are set up to mimic how a human brain thinks.
90 per cent of UK data breaches due to human error in 2019
According to the cybersecurity awareness and data analysis firm, nine out of 10 of the 2376 cyber-breaches reported to the ICO last year were caused by mistakes made by end-users. This marked an increase from the previous two years, when respectively, 61 and 87 per cent of cyber-breaches were ascribed to user error. The study cited phishing as the primary cause of breaches in 2019, accounting for 45 per cent of all the reports. ‘Unauthorized access’ was the next most common cause of cyber-breaches in 2019, with reports relating to malware or ransomware, hardware/software misconfiguration and brute force password attacks also noted. Read the full story here.