A 90 percent increase over the previous quarter; we're not talking about bitcoin

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March 25, 2021

It’s going to be a long time until anything is truly the same after the COVID-19 pandemic. Whether it’s the movement out of high-rent offices to in-home workspaces, the way we greet one another, or just that thought of ‘This seems odd’ being in a crowded room -- parts of the pre-COVID world will go by the wayside for a while.

A WatchGuard report revealed how COVID-19 impacted the security threat landscape as attacks continued to target corporate networks. The number of phishing campaigns, due to individuals working on their personal networks at home, also rose.

Many businesses won’t be returning to an office even after COVID-19 is behind us. Many have adapted and enjoyed the shift to a home office, but that doesn’t come without some downfalls.

Endpoint protection and network security will become a top priority for the near future. As cybercriminals adapt, it will be important to establish a layered approach to information security with services that can fight off evasive and encrypted attacks, sophisticated phishing campaigns, and whatever comes next.

Network attacks and unique detections reach two-year highs

Not exactly the type of high you want to see as a trend. Network attacks jumped to more than 3.3 in Q3 of 2020, representing a 90 percent increase over the previous quarter and the highest level in two years. Unique network attack signatures also reached a two-year high. This is more likely to be a growing trend than a blip on the radar in our “new normal.”

These results demonstrate that businesses must prioritize maintaining and strengthening protections for network-based assets and services, even as workforces become increasingly remote.

The threat landscape

One of the many things we learned in 2020 is that no subject is immune from being involved in a phishing campaign. Bad actors will take advantage of the news of the day -- even going against websites used for legitimate support in the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Hackers breached the United Nations network with an email hook containing messaging around small business relief from the UN due to the pandemic. 

A combined 2,764,736 malicious domain connections were blocked, which translates to 499 blocked connections per organization in total, in Q3 of 2020. This also translates to each organization would have interacted with 262 malware domains, 71 compromised websites, and 52 phishing campaigns, on average.

Fear, uncertainty, doubt, and money will always be at the top of the list for phishing scams. Human error is always the toughest component to prevent, and investing in top endpoint protection can block a costly mistake.

Password protection

One of the most successful tricks for hackers is to create something that’s bad that looks nearly identical to one that protects your computer. 

Farelt, a password stealer that resembles LokiBot, climbed in the top five most-widespread malware detections in Q3 of 2020. It has the ability to bypass antiviruses and trick users into installing the malware. Since it looks so similar to LokiBot, many users aren’t even aware it’s there until it’s too late and able to steal your valuable information.


Endpoint protection and security will remain a pivotal focus for all companies. Businesses have been forced to pay hundreds of thousands -- or even millions -- due to a hacking breach and the bad actors are just becoming more sophisticated. If you think your business may need an upgrade or even just a consultation, schedule a time with one of our experts today.