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Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Kaspersky dives deeper into the digital reputation economy of the Asia Pacific region

12/13/2020 10:59:52 PM

The Asia Pacific region is known hotbed for social media as it houses more than half of the total users worldwide and is at the center of Facebook’s growth. Imagine, there are over 1 billion people based from East Asia who logs into their virtual network of friends; moreover, 400 million from each of the South and Southeast Asia regions – that's according to the latest report of Statista

As the region first hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, different forms of lockdowns have been implemented, eased, and re-issued across APAC, putting forward the uncharted opportunities of the internet and social media. The rapid rise of use and the ever-evolving usage of these platforms — from posting pictures, sending messages, to now being an expanding marketplace — makes it essential to examine this new economic frontier. 

Kaspersky, through its theme “Secure Your Digital Reputation”, aims to deep dive on how the information shared online becomes one’s reputation and how can this have a huge impact in the real world. The annual media conference, which was held online for the first time, witnessed topline presentations by Kaspersky’s elite researcher, an industry expert, and attended by journalists from 12 APAC countries.
“One of the most visible effects of this pandemic is how it forced everyone, from individuals to the biggest companies, to shift a lot of their activities online. This dependence, triggered by our need to secure our physical health, also pushed us to increase our social media use, either to connect with our distant loved ones, to give support to our community, to entertain ourselves, or to get hold of products and services that we need. Parallel to this trend is the opening of wider doors for cybercriminals to exploit,” said Vitaly Kamluk, Director of Global Research and Analysis (GReAT) for APAC at Kaspersky.
While the pandemic saw people heavily relying to the internet, cybercriminal actors also saw it as an opportunity to create an effective tool — a “hook” that could make one click a phishing email, share a malicious link, forward an infected image, and more. In fact, as early as April, while many companies moved employees from working in the office to working from their homes, several incidents of cyberattacks have been cited, such as: 
  • Brute-force attacks on database servers in April 2020 were up 23% 
  • Malicious files planted on websites increased by 8% in April 
  • Network attacks and phishing emails rose
“From detecting and analyzing 350,000 unique malware samples a day pre-COVID, we currently see a total of 428,000 new samples per 24-hour window. Add the geopolitical events across APAC, the uptick in e-commerce and e-wallet adoption, the continuous remote work set-up and online learning, and the emotional and psychological stresses of the situation, the 2020 threat landscape seems to favor cybercriminals. However, hope is in our hands as we are the controller of our online activities. Improved vigilance to protect our digital identities and assets is necessary,” added Kamluk.

Joining Kamluk on the virtual stage was Rafizah Amran, an integrated marketing communications and public relations specialist, and a communications coach with over 20 years of experience across several industries including pharmaceutical, healthcare & nutritional consultancy, FMCG, finance, entertainment, broadcasting, tourism, aviation and non-profit.

Presently known as Deputy Chief Marketing and Communication Officer for Prasarana Malaysia Berhad, Amran spearheaded a discussion on managing a brand's digital reputation while providing an optimum online customer experience in order to gain and cultivate customer preference.
“From my experience, the digital reputation of a company is important. Our hyperconnected community made it easier for consumers to voice out their opinions in favor of or against our products and services. This forced us, marketers and companies, to focus beyond closing sales and running campaigns, and to know our end-users, put customers’ experience in the middle, and involve them in our decision-making process. Most importantly, in this era of quick postings and virality, it is important for brands to be very honest and be excellent listeners,” said Amran.
Speaking based on her observations, Amran shared real-life experience with public transport users and its stakeholders — good and bad — and how Prasarana uses a range of digital tools, elbow grease, and a lot of big data analysis to craft a Marcom digital strategy that speaks directly to its customers. She also touched lightly on reputation management and managing a crisis in today's instant gratification culture.

Author: slickmaster | © 2020 The SlickMaster's Files

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