The Africa Cyber Security report 2019/20 has revealed an increase in remote connection vulnerabilities in Uganda, citing increased working from home due to the pandemic.
The report authored by the Africa Cyber Immersion Centre Researchers, Milima Security and Serianu Limited, among others, assesses evolving threats.
It found there were increased cyber-attacks in 2020 informed by growing remote connections, which rose by over 30 per cent in Uganda.
A vulnerability is described as a weakness, which can be exploited by an attacker to cross privileged boundaries such as performing unauthorised actions within a computer system.
The report noted there was a more than 30 per cent increase in remote connections in Uganda since the onset of Covid-19, which has led to increased vulnerabilities.
For instance, the report said there were 1,350 vulnerabilities in February 2020.
In mid-March, which was the period when the lockdown was announced, vulnerabilities grew to 1,640, representing a 21 per cent increase.
The vulnerabilities skyrocketed in growing to 2,524 from 1,640 in March.
The figure, however, later dropped by 4 per cent in November as the country gradually eased the lockdown for certain sectors of the economy.
The most common attacks during the period included phishing, remote access, exploiting of new teleworking infrastructure and malware distribution among others.
Telnet, which supports remote maintenance of various networking communication systems including routers and switches, is the most vulnerable port in Uganda and Kenya among others.
Mr Emmanuel Chagara, the Milima Security chief executive officer said there is need for companies or organisations to install and maintain high security controls, especially if staff are working remotely.
“It is important to enable strong passwords and account lockouts, use two-factor authentication and regulate and limit internal and external remote connections,” he noted.