Can Cyber Awareness Training Protect Employees From Keylogging Software?

Can Cyber Awareness Training Protect Employees From Keylogging Software?
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Summary: Keylogging software is a serious problem because all the activities of an employee can be tracked. How can cyber awareness training help?

What Is Keylogging Software?

Cyber awareness training must include the prevention of the installation of keylogging software because this is now the most prevalent method of cyberattack, along with phishing. The training of the C-suite level employees is important too because any data breach with them makes the company more vulnerable. They have access to the most sensitive data of the company, and hence their training should be a priority.

Companies are implementing cyber awareness training, but still, problems can be caused due to the ignorant attitude of employees. Hence, companies have to make sure some checks are mandatory for employees. For example, a company needs to make sure that if there has been a security lapse, it is reported on time.

An employee could be browsing some unanticipated websites, leading to malware being downloaded onto the PC. Fellow employees could report this behavior and then action could be taken in time and the malware could be removed from the system. But the reporting employees’ identity should be protected so that they do not face any consequences for their actions. The employees could be informed about the hotline for filing complaints through sticky notes, etc.

What Is Keylogging Software/Hardware?

In some specific cases, when an employee has left the company they might still have access to the company system through keyboard capture/keylogging software because this software allows access to an office PC as the software user is aware of the credentials of other employees. Once such software is installed on a PC, it allows the ex-employee/hacker to know the keystrokes which are entered on the computer. The victim on whose PC this software is installed does not know that this software is running in the background while they are doing their work.

Keyloggers don’t need to be in the form of software. There are devices, too, that, when attached to the computer or the keyboard, can intercept keystrokes. Such software/hardware allows a lot of privilege to the user because they can get all the information, such as the webpages visited by a victim, and any text which is copied and pasted.

Key capture software is also used when parents want to monitor what websites children are visiting in their absence. This is because this software can read what the children type into the browser.

How To Tackle Keylogging?

1. Have An Incident Response Plan

Employees must be made aware of how pivotal a role they play in the cybersecurity of the company. Cyber awareness training is not a one-time event, and it should be imparted continuously for best results. In a situation where a company has detected that a key capture software was used, it must have an incident response plan in place. The employees should be given all the details about the incident response plan to be implemented in case of a security breach. All participants should be trained about their specific roles in this plan.

2. Prevent Installation

Employees have to be told about how they can prevent the installation of keylogging software on their system, which can happen in many ways.

Using An Antivirus Software

Users should have antivirus software installed on their systems so that when they get an email from an unauthorized source, they do not open it. Even though they might open this email, they must not download and install the email attachment, including any games. A keylogger can also get access to a PC when a user visits a malicious website that has an expired security certificate. Such websites can also download a payloader software to the system, which can then download and install a keylogger.

Users should also not open malicious pop-ups, or click on any mp3 files on the internet to play them or any YouTube videos. But installing antivirus software is not sufficient to block keylogging software. This is because the latter are being invented all the time, and the antivirus software can only block the installation of the known software included in its database. It takes time for antivirus software to recognize any new keylogging software on the block and discover how to prevent it by creating specific signatures for its detection. So, how to prevent keyloggers from finding your keystrokes?

  • Virtual keyboards
    A user can ensure that keylogging software is not able to detect their keystrokes when they use a virtual keyboard. This is because, through this software, the user does not press the keys on the keyboard hardware to type, but instead uses the mouse to touch the keys on the virtual keyboard which can’t be traced. The Windows operating system already has this feature enabled in its “accessories.” Virtual keyboards were not invented for stopping keylogging, and there is keylogging software that can capture the keystrokes of such virtual keyboards too. The reason behind the generation of virtual keyboards was to help physically challenged computer users, who could not type, to enter keystrokes by touching the mouse. Hence, for them to work the models that were invented exclusively for blocking keylogging software have to be used.
  • Using an encryption software
    Encryption can only help you in protecting against data theft through keylogging software. Through cyber awareness training, employees can be taught about how to use anti-keylogging keystroke encryption software. The keystrokes are encrypted through this software and can’t be detected by any keyloggers installed on the PC.
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