Regulator advised of ‘recent and ongoing’ cyberattack against RSL
The Scottish Housing Regulator (SHR) has warned landlords to be on their guard against potential cyberattacks during the coronavirus pandemic after it learned of a “recent and ongoing” ransomware attack against a Registered Social Landlord (RSL).
In a letter to landlords, director of regulation Ian Brennan said coronavirus-themed phishing attacks and hacking campaigns are on the rise and urged social landlords to take steps to protect themselves from this threat “as a priority”.
Mr Brennan wrote: “We have been advised of a recent and ongoing ransomware attack against a Registered Social Landlord.
“The current pandemic presents new risks and issues and we are aware that there has been a significant rise in the incidence of criminals using coronavirus for phishing attacks, malware and ransomware to exploit businesses and charities at this time.”
He added: “Techniques seen since the start of the year include bogus emails with links claiming to have important updates, which once clicked on lead to devices being infected.
“These ‘phishing’ attempts have been seen in several countries and can lead to loss of money and sensitive data.”
The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has revealed a range of attacks being perpetrated online as cybercriminals seek to exploit COVID-19. The NCSC is urging businesses and the public to consult its online guidance, including how to spot and deal with suspicious emails as well as mitigate and defend against malware and ransomware.
Mr Brennan went on: “Last October I wrote to you about the importance of cybersecurity in safeguarding the interests of your tenants and residents.
“We urge all social landlords to review the guidance material available and take steps to protect themselves from this threat as a priority.”
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