Mental & Physical Health fighting Cybercrime

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Mental Health Cybercrime

In the recent ISITC Europe webcast ‘Is your home the new Office’, eminent panel members from the world of cybersecurity, including the DTCC and Verizon discussed amongst other things, the role of mental/physical health in fighting Cybercrime, due to the increased threat posed due to  a home or remote working environment.

Lockdown from Covid 19 has changed the lives of millions of people in the UK and countless billions around the world, where working from home includes all the stress of extra family responsibilities, mixed in with the pressure of employees to maintain a productive and efficient work ethic, whilst situated in a home environment. With many sitting in front of a screen for hours at a time, being fearful or unable to leave, often working longer hours, which becomes mentally tiring. Physical challenges multiply, as many of the new couch-potato employees, inevitably gain weight and lose physical and mental stamina.

Initially, no doubt, there was novelty regarding working from home, but now things look they may have changed forever, with a significant number of people likely to continue working from home for the rest of their working lives. This change brings with it new threats and challenges. This new scenario plays directly into the hands of the cybercriminal. This downturn in physical and mental health brings about tiredness. A loss of concentration for a second at your screen, a click on something you should not, is just the opportunity cyber criminals are waiting for, allowing them to invade your systems to create mayhem. This can spell disaster both personally and corporately.

People must ensure they have a good work/life balance to enable them to make the switch to efficient remote working. That means having bright and healthy minds operating to the optimal capability, combined with good physical fitness to help the mind to destress and function properly.

What then is the advice for those working from home, when cybercrime is on the increase and fraudulent activities are a constant threat?

Protect yourself with technology and processes are a given, but the first line of defence is to make sure human error does not open the door. Cyber criminals are inventive, always working on new ways and stories to make you click in error. You are at your most vulnerable when you’re tired, or in a state where concentration has withered. This could be at any time during the day. Taking time away from the screen at regular intervals will help but being mentally and physically in a prime state will provide a much greater chance of protection.

Getting fit does not have to be onerous, it can be fun and should be included in your daily routine. Perhaps start the day with a ½ hour workout to get those little grey cells sparking. Or take a lunchtime or mid-afternoon walk to blow away the cobwebs. This can-do wonders for productivity! It’s easy! You don’t have to go to the gym or have lots of space or equipment and there are Personal Trainers waiting to help, through motivation and online training. Getting fit will not only improve your physical health but prepare your mind and increase your mental dexterity ready for the next cyber-attack. The role of Mental/Physical Health fighting Cybercrime should not be underestimated. It might just save your job and your bank account!

By Gary Wright, Director, ISITC EUROPE

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