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BBB program to focus on cybersecurity protections for businesses, consumers

BBB program to focus on cybersecurity protections for businesses, consumers

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The Better Business Bureau is offering businesses a free, online program, “Protecting your Business and Employees from Cyber Threats in Our New Normal.” from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Oct. 22.

According to a recent study conducted by cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike, current threat activity throughout its customers’ networks has shown more intrusion attempts within the first half of 2020 than in all of 2019. CrowdStrike believes that the biggest cause for the dramatic increase in threat activity is the COVID-19 pandemic that has forced many people to change their routines, whether they’re working from home or spending more time on their smartphones and tablets.

“The switch was too sudden and expanded organizations’ attack surfaces by an unpredictable amount,” the report said. “Threat actors jumped on the opportunity to exploit these newly increased attack surfaces and were more successful than in recent years.”

The BBB Scam Tracker also shows online purchases and phishing reports have increased by 58% this year.

“The cybersecurity threat is constant as fraudsters use fake websites, phishing emails, text messages and social media to target their victims,” said BBB President Jim Hegarty. “Bad guys are out there, watching and waiting for an opportunity to strike. They are gathering information about your organization and users, devising the perfect plan to infiltrate your business. So, it is vital to be careful where you click, and that you have the latest virus protection on your devices. While there is no way to completely guard against online threats, there are ways to decrease your exposure.”

Education is your best defense.

The program presenters are Bruce Wray, legal counsel, Vendor Legal, certified certified information systems security professional, PayPal; Dr. Ashley Podhradsky, associate dean, Beacom College of Computer and Cyber Sciences, Dakota State University; and Eric Rodriguez, president, Accociation of Certified Fraud Examiners Heartland Chapter.

Wray will speak on cybersecurity risks when working remotely and cyber fraud prevention. Podhradsksy will address the types of phishing attacks currently being used on businesses and Rodriguez will speak about the risks associated with the increase of online purchasing and credit card fraud during the pandemic.

Although this is a free, public service program, reservations are required.

To register, go to and click on “View Event” under “BBB Cyber Program.”

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