Cyber security
22.12 2023

Cyber Security Expert: IT Hygiene Should Not Be Neglected During Holidays and Vacations

The line blurring between work and spare time, and the widespread use of remote work mean that people sometimes log in to their computers even during holidays and vacations. Mihkel Kukk, Head of Cyber Security Services at KPMG, points out that especially business users must take into account the risks associated with working outside the office.

Before vacations, companies should review plans for software updates of their systems and ensure that the organization's website will work. All this is necessary to avoid surprises while the employees responsible for IT matters are on vacation.

"It goes without saying that software and anti-virus programs must be updated in all circumstances. Outside the office, instead of a public and unsecured Wi-Fi network, you must use either mobile data or a VPN connection, which does not allow strangers to monitor internet traffic," Kukk says. It is also wise to encrypt your laptop hard drive. Screen lock, encryption and remote management must be used on the phone so that, if necessary, the location of the device can be detected or its contents remotely deleted to prevent data leakage.

Based on international studies done by KPMG, 90 percent of companies have faced at least one cyber attack, and 26 percent of those incidents forced companies to suspend their operations temporarily.

When logging in to your computer on an airplane, in a hotel lobby or some other public place, it is worth considering whether the documents to be opened and visible on the screen should be hidden from prying eyes. A screen filter helps hide content from others. "Also, it is not wise to leave your laptop unattended. Even if you only need to leave the computer for a moment, the screen lock opened with a code or your fingerprint must be turned on," the KPMG expert adds.

You should always treat links sent via email with caution. Most of us have come across threatening emails seemingly sent by "Estonian police" or well-known companies, the purpose of which is phishing or a ransomware attack. Unfortunately, time and again, we hear about cases where the recipient of an email has taken the bait of fraudsters.

Mihkel Kukk

Head of Cyber Security
+372 521 4332

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