Technology companies do have a role to play in the ongoing crisis. Firms like Google, Apple, Twitter, etc have made their own contributions and are still continuing. Now, the software maker Microsoft stepped in to help those critical servicemen fighting for the COVID-19.
Microsoft announced to open its security service, AccountGuard for free for healthcare institutions throughout this pandemic period. Further, it also expands its service to human rights organizations as general, who can too signup for additional security.
Attacks on Critical Organizations
Authorities have long warned us that ransomware and malware attacks are increasing based on this Coronavirus, which invoke fear urge in users and turn them into victims. Especially, organizations as healthcare and human rights were being targeted even before this pandemic, as they are critical and can garner ransom quickly. Thus, Microsoft decided to help these institutions waive those attacks at least to an extent, and help them do their job.
Tom Burt, Corporate VP of Customer Security and Trust at Microsoft released its AccountGuard service, which is specifically designed to avoid or reduce spear phishing attacks. These are the major types of attacks organizations as hospitals fall into. And Microsoft has pledged to serve by monitoring those clients who use their consumer office products like Office 365. So when detected something suspicious, the Microsoft security team will alert the organization immediately to act on it.
Phishing Campaigns – A Major Deal
A phishing campaign kicks in with a fake pretending email, asking an employee to open and act on it. Emails as official information from their boss, or confidential details about the virus or something else that urge him to react on what attacker desired. He would be asked to open an attachment or login to his account with official company credentials into a fake login page, which would let the hacker steal his credentials for accessing the organization’s network later on, or dump a malware that encrypts the whole network.
Microsoft said they’d help such healthcare institutions for free until this COVID-19 settles, and they’re also expanding to another industry as Humanitarian Organizations, those who strive for human rights. These organizations too were target of hackers even before this pandemic, so it’s sensible to serve them too. But, these would be sign-up for commercial plans of AccountGuard unlike healthcare freemium. Microsoft said it would be available in 29 countries to serve now.
If you belong to any of the institutions as hospitals, clinics, labs and clinicians,
care facilities, pharmaceutical, life sciences and medical devices companies etc who’re working for COVID-19 related issues, you’re free to signup. Besides, if you belong to a human rights or humanitarian organisation, you can signup to, but commercially.
Source: Microsoft Blog