Akamai: More time online means more security threats to businesses

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According to Akamai’s data overall digital traffic spiked 30% higher than average when countries began lockdown measures against the coronavirus pandemic, which led to an increase in phishing and malware attacks. Their researchers found more than 10 million blocked malware requests in 2020 along with more than 6 million attempted phishing attacks.

“One of the lessons learned in 2020, as it pertains to remote work and distance learning, is that the usual way of protection will work to a degree, but security must adapt rapidly to changing situations,” said Steve Ragan, Akamai security researcher, and author of the State of the Internet / Security report. “Just because a policy or program works great in a data center or office doesn’t mean it will work when everyone has to go home. The forced changes in 2020 were a blunt reminder of this fact.”

These increases, say the experts, is another reason for both small businesses and large enterprises to up their security protection even after workers return from remote environments.

Other interesting findings from the report include:

• Akamai saw 299 million DNS queries per day through 2020
• Phishing ranked second for attack frequency, following malware
• November 11 saw traffic increase to 97% higher than average

“Defending enterprise systems is a challenge at the best of times,” said Robert Blumofe, chief technology officer at Akamai. “Doing so in the middle of a pandemic only adds to these complexities and challenges. Akamai was able to transition to, and defend, a 99% remote workforce, because we’ve long viewed all access as remote access. We built our environment with the necessary capabilities, including leveraging Zero Trust concepts and robust, layered defenses.”

More data from Akamai’s Adapting to the Unpredictable report can be found here.



Kristina Knight-1
Kristina Knight, Journalist , BA
Content Writer & Editor
Kristina Knight is a freelance writer with more than 15 years of experience writing on varied topics. Kristina’s focus for the past 10 years has been the small business, online marketing, and banking sectors, however, she keeps things interesting by writing about her experiences as an adoptive mom, parenting, and education issues. Kristina’s work has appeared with BizReport.com, NBC News, Soaps.com, DisasterNewsNetwork, and many more publications.