Cybersecurity awareness in PH needs improvement
MANILA -Cybersecurity awareness in the Philippines has to be scaled up to avert potentially costly and dangerous cyberattacks in the country, even if cybersecurity firm Kaspersky observed a notable decline in web threats so far this year.
Data provided by Kaspersky to the Inquirer showed that it detected and foiled 31.35 million incidents of web threats between Jan. 1 and Oct. 26 this year, a decrease of 20.4 percent from 39.39 million recorded in 2022.
Vitaly Kamluk, head of Apac Unit of Kaspersky’s Global Research & Analysis Team, said more public awareness campaigns would help the country avoid online fraud and secure personal data on the internet.
“The fact that Filipino users may fall easier for such attacks means that [their] security awareness and maturity [are] probably not [at] the right level compared to other countries,” Kamluk told the Inquirer in an interview.
Kamluk suggested incorporating security-related lessons in schools and on television to help Filipino users recognize and deal with online scams.
Noushin Shabab, a senior security researcher at Kaspersky, said individual users can mitigate the risks by using filters for incoming messages or email and enhancing their knowledge and training.
“It’s just a matter of getting people more aware and educated about cyberattacks, and the risks that every individual has because a lot of people think that I don’t have … information that is sensitive and can be abused by hackers and malicious actors in many ways,” Shabab said.
The telecommunications sector can also help by blacklisting, suspending or disabling accounts involved in spreading spam messages as “they have first-hand access to the channels through which such information is spread.”
“They can pretty much easily suspend [the] subscriber’s IDs or phone numbers that are abused in such attacks and will now reduce the appetite of the attackers to leverage the infrastructure of the certain telecom providers,” he said.
Kamluk also said the government may want to leverage the community response, a platform that allows citizens to report to local authorities any unwanted or unsolicited digital communication that tricks them into disclosing personal information or clicking links to infect their computers.
“The more such reports are coming to the government, the faster they will respond and blacklist the most active of them, and that helps reduce the number of attacks so something like that can be implemented,” he added.