As there is a global Corona Virus pandemic happening right now, there are challenges economically, socially and politically to overcome it. But the digital world is thriving successfully, so as the potential digital privacy threats.
With the legitimate information circulating in websites, businesses encouraging their workers to “Work From Home,” schools implementing a remote learning program, hospitals continuing to collaborate via telemedicine, people staying connected and updating through social media or other web platforms, the world is heading towards the future of digitization. It is a good thing, but it is also a reminder for us to overlook our means of protecting digital privacy.
Digital privacy threats are not new. It always happens but the fear that surveils now is with the kind of situation we are in, can we worry about the basic digital hygiene? Well, let’s find out why we should do that and how to do that.
Just in the past few days the Coronovirus statistics site Worldometers.info and the US Department of Health and Human Services have both been the target of cyber attackers with the intention to disrupt operations and information flow.
There was a malware “COVID19 Tracker”, recently reported in the Android platform. The app was disguised as a live tracker of Corona affected regions.Once given administrative permissions, the app hacks the phone and demands ransomware of 100USD worth of Bitcoin.
It is just an example, but those malware attacks and phishing scams are increasing with people panicking.
The attacks are happening international level as well. A recent Forbes article, states that “a targeted cyber-attack by a Chinese APT group on a public sector entity of Mongolia has been intercepted.”It was said that the APT sent two documents, impersonating the Mongolian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the form of press briefings. Those documents contained unique, remote access malware.
With people worried about surveillance, there are permissions handed out to relevant agencies that may track data subjects where an infection is suspected using mobile device data, email, and geolocation information to evaluate the risk. Although it is rational to conclude that an emergency in public health requires extraordinary measures to control the epidemic, the consequences of this behavior on exposed data subjects are less apparent, so as the status of data collected.
In addition to washing our hands often and avoiding social interaction, we should also have our digital privacy protection check on point. Few points to remember are given below.
We are in a difficult phase and every individual’s responsibility is the key to come out of such a big crisis. So let’s act responsibly both socially and digitally!!