Remote Work and Managing Cybersecurity Risks During the Coronavirus Outbreak

For many cybercriminals, the outbreak of the COVID-19 or the Coronavirus is an opportunity to use the chaos to their advantage. As we know, almost the entire world switched to remote working and many IT companies have to be double-careful with their organizations’ cybersecurity. Even though we feel safe at home trying to flatten the curve, working from home can become a headache for many companies. 

Alongside the transition to teleworking, security teams should assess what risks need to be addressed. To get the job done, billions of people use conferencing softwares like Zoom, Skype or Hangouts and login into their work accounts from home. Many don’t have access to VPN services and they forget to, at least, change the passwords to assure some security. 

It’s absolutely critical to take stricter cybersecurity measures with the increased volume of remote workers. With the Coronavirus outbreak, the number of cyber threats and email fishing has doubled. 

Check the emails you get from your colleagues asking for internal information. Calls and emails can be faked. Everyone should be alert, use encrypted softwares and keep the backups of their data on safe clouds. Paying attention to basic security hygiene can go a long way since we don’t know how long the crisis stage of the Coronavirus is going to last.

Cyber attacks are the last thing we as a society need right now. The collective caution when it comes to using safe softwares to work and back up your data can help your company avoid costly incidents.

While protecting your physical health, you shouldn’t forget about your data security. We at Stingle Photos were and are working from home and 100% prepared to cope with the current situation with minimal business disruption. 

A few remote work cybersecurity tips

  • Among a dozen problems that we have to deal with during the Coronavirus outbreak, having your company’s data spread across your team’s personal iCloud or Google Drive accounts can become one of the biggest issues.

It makes sense to provide your team with trustworthy services to communicate and save their work-related files, video and audio material. Count on Stingle Photos. It’s an open-source photo and video gallery with encrypted cloud storage space where your team can save their media.

  • Provide a free VPN service for your team to have encrypted Internet traffic especially when connected to a public Wi-Fi network.
  • Functions like “remember password” for company information systems and work tools should be turned off.
  • Make sure your team implements two-factor authentication both on their mobile phones and laptops.

While trying to stay safe during the Coronavirus outbreak we should take all the measures to reduce the likelihood of cyberattacks, data leakage and errors. For what we know, this situation can entirely change the way we work and revolutionize modern work culture.

Stingle Photos vs iCloud, Google Drive and Dropbox | Which Is the Safest Cloud Storage Solution

“I remember waking up to see 87 notifications on my phone screen. Someone got into my Google Drive account and stole my photos and, I assume, all my work-related documents. I didn’t know what to do. I was too scared to call my manager, but at the same time, I was more worried about my sensitive data. Did they see my nude photos that we took with Eric at the beach? What should I do?”

Stories like this are more common then you would expect. Models’ accounts get hacked, social media users’ data is sold to third-party companies, bloggers who keep their raw material on cloud storage find their unpublished articles on other websites. The list is too long and scary. In 2020, we still can’t trust any safe cloud storage apps because many of them are not.

Let’s compare the best safe cloud storage solutions to understand which one we can use to protect our online privacy:

iCloud

It’s Apple’s cloud storage service that is believed to be more secure than many of its competitors. However, the biggest downside is that it is not an open-source service which means no one has access to their source code to audit and find problems by the security and privacy professionals. 

Apple has a good reputation and an army of fans who trust their products and services 100%, but if we look back we can see that the company worked hand in hand with NSA and in 2017 cybercriminals stole photos of celebrities and published them online. If FBI requests information about Apple users, they are obliged to provide your data including your iCloud photos, calendar, contacts, etc. Do we still trust Apple and believe its iCloud service is secure enough?

Apple holds the right to scan and delete any data at any time if that is “objectionable”. The company doesn’t even explain what they mean by “objectionable” so maybe it’s something to have in mind every time you upload anything sensitive into your iCloud account.

Google Drive

The service is very popular and easy to use to back up your data, however, there are many concerns about how secure Google Drive really is. NSA with its PRISM surveillance program was collaborating with Google Cloud to collect material on users including their search history, the content of emails, live chats and file transfers.

All your files are encrypted “on the fly” to make sure all users’ data is stored securely. But there is a catch! Google holds the key to your files, which means that they can go into your files if they want to.

Thus, we have another convenient, easy-to-use service that is not secure enough to store our photos and videos.

Dropbox

Compared to Google Cloud and iCloud, this service is not a part of a big corporation with other countless products and services. It’s just a cloud storage service created to serve its only purpose. So, they had one job and, well, they failed at it. While Dropbox is popular, it’s not secure at all and has been criticized by many professionals including Edward Snowden. It’s impossible to verify the source code for the service since it’s partly closed source and there is no end-to-end encryption. 

Like Google Drive, Dropbox holds the encryption keys of all its users which gives them a chance to access user data whenever they want to. This is a risk in terms of our data security and privacy. The company has already failed to protect its users’ privacy by first storing user login information in plain text and then making everybody’s files open to access for 4 hours without the account password.

Stingle Photos

It’s a new player in the market that is determined to provide secure and private experience to its users. The main goal of the service is to ensure your data has no chance to be hacked, leaked or stolen neither from your phone nor from the cloud.

It’s an open-source safe photo app and cloud storage designed to save your photos and videos by encrypting each file you upload on the cloud. Stingle Photos software is released under the GPLv3 license, and everyone can review, audit and even contribute to the codebase. If you are looking for a security and privacy-oriented cloud storage, source code transparency should be an absolute requirement.

Libsodium – a well-vetted cryptographic library is used as an encryption backbone, and, even more, you only provide your email and create a password to register. Your photo and video metadata is 100% encrypted which means in case of a cyber-attack all they get are meaningless ones and zeros. Stingle Photos does not hold the encryption keys and there are no exception backdoors.

You can support Stingle Photos and take control over your data privacy by downloading the app from the Google Store and soon from the App Store.

Top Reasons Why You Should Care About Your Online Privacy and How Stingle Photos Can Keep Your Photos Safe

The right to out data and photo privacy has been compromised by an unprecedented number of cyberattacks in 2019 and 2020. Billions of private photos were leaked exposing many celebrities, politicians and people like you and me. 

We often think we don’t need any apps to hide our pictures since we have nothing to hide. Yet, would you agree to show your bank transfers or post your ID on social media? Private photos must stay, well, private. 

  • In 2019, WhatsApp was hacked and spyware was installed on users’ phones
  • Dozens of celebrity nude photos were leaked from iCloud and Google Drive 
  • Sensitive plastic surgery photos and patients’ personal data was exposed online

Whether you are an influencer with thousands of followers or just a girl who saves her private photos for her boyfriend, you need to understand how essential it is to keep your data privacy. 

Here are 10 reasons why you should care about your online privacy

A fundamental human right

Whether you only have thousands of photos of your dog or you keep compromising photos on your phone, we have a right to online privacy. Only you should decide who can see your photos, videos, messages and work documents. 

Your reputation

We spend a lifetime building our reputation and public image. People perceive our personal brand based on the information we share. Yet, all this can be ruined in a matter of seconds. A leaked video of you taking part in a funny ceremony ban be interpreted in a wrong way, a photo where your colleague is kissing another man will reveal his sexual orientation without him being ready for that. The examples are many and the consequences can change lives.

We change over time

We grow and change our believes, ideas and opinions. A tweet you posted in 2018 does not reflect your current beliefs anymore. The photo where you enjoy a huge stake in 2015 shouldn’t be public for everyone to judge you since you are a vegan now. 

We have the right to change and we have the right to manage the information we share with the world. Even if it’s something innocent like your high school photos, you have to be able to keep those photos safe. 

It’s your career at stake

Who hasn’t applied for a job while still being employed? Who hasn’t sent an awkward photo of her manager to colleagues? Is it just me or you also take a screenshot of your conversation with your teammates and send those to your friend to ask for an opinion?

We do things that are not right but we also have the right to keep it to ourselves without risking our career and reputation. That’s the only way to grow as a professional. But once you are exposed you might have a hard time finding a job in your field since other companies will not want an employee like you. 

Stingle – Control over your photo and video privacy

Now, it’s time to seek a way to take care of your photo and video privacy. There are a number of photo vault apps trying to secure your photos but they only work if someone uses your phone and you set a password to make your photos and videos private. This still doesn’t protect you from leaks. Your data is still not encrypted and is stored on iCloud, Google Drive or OneDrive.

Stingle Photos offers an unprecedented solution to protect your media. It’s an open-source gallery/camera application designed to encrypt, back up and save your photos and videos safe on cloud storage.

Let’s dive deeper to understand how Stingle works. 

No ads

For those who are annoyed with targeted ads and endless pop-ups and announcements, Stingle is 100% ad-free. In addition to that, no personal information is collected and no analytics tools are installed to track you when you use the app or visit the website. 

1 GB of free storage

You can enjoy your 1 GB of free space to save your photos and videos. Once you run out of storage space, you can either free up space by deleting local copies of files that you have already backed up or upgrade up to 20 TB

Transparency

Stingle Photos team believes that trust comes from openness and transparency, that’s why it’s open-source software, which means everyone can audit and review the codebase. We encourage you not to trust any security applications that fail to provide source code transparency. 

You can download Stingle Photos to protect your photo and video privacy from Google Play and soon from App Store.