Practicing Safe Computing in the Age of "TTCD" - Michele Petry
Practicing Safe Computing in the Age of "TTCD" - Trojan Transmitted Computer Diseases
Another day, another alert. And while the threat from the latest alert appers to now be under control (the Russian hacker site delivering the malicious code has been shut down), you must understand its severity as it may have been attempting to gain users' password information, threatening your Internet banking users, and it may have implications for the future.
Virus writers, phishers, hackers and other computer infidels have infiltrated the Virtual Garden of Eden once again, leaving poor Adam and Eve exposed and vulnerable as they hunger after the fruit of the Internet.
How can you (and your customers) be safe from their threats?
The choices are bleak. According to Microsoft, whose software continues to be plagued with security holes, the answer is for all of us to hunker-down, tighten the hatches and start practicing some safe-computing.
The fix, according to Microsoft, is to tighten your email and Internet Browser security settings.
Couple the impact of this latest trojan with the continuing threat posed by "phishers" who use deceptive-looking emails to potentially trick unknowing customers into disclosing sensitive customer information and the risks to your institution compound.
What does this mean for your Institution?
Vigiliance and communication are key. Network administrators must continue to walk a risk-management tight-rope between tightening the firewalls and restricting user access and allowing key business-related Internet activities to occur.
Procedures need to be put into place to allow rapid communication between IT and employees informing them of potential threats from Web-related activity. Likewise, customer communications, also need to be considered. Simple steps to consider include:
- Provide a link on your web site for posting Security Alerts for your customers. Explain the dangers of "Phishing" and warn customers to safeguard their information.
- Inform your customers of your policy of contacting them via email. If you will never request account information via email, then be sure your customer is told that they should suspect any email requesting them to disclose confidential information.
In this age of "TTCD" - Trojan Transmitted Computer Diseases, both employees and customers need to practice safe-computing. You can help them get started by keeping them informed.
First published on BankersOnline.com 06/28/04
First published on 06/28/2004