Guest Post: Over 140 Thousand US Federal Employees Exposed To Phishing Scams In 2020 Says Atlas VPN

Recent estimations by the Atlas VPN research team reveal that over 1 million US government employees were potentially exposed to mobile phishing scams from January 1, 2020, to December 31, 2020. 

Phishing attacks designed to steal sensitive data like login credentials can be delivered through email, messaging applications, social media platforms, or even dating applications.

The estimations are based on numbers provided by Lookout, a leading mobile security platform. Lookout is used by the US federal, state, and local government workers on both personal and government-issued mobile devices. 

Approximation reveals that as many as 140 thousand US federal employees were exposed to phishing scams in 2020. Furthermore, over 366 thousand state employees and 946 thousand local employees potentially received phishing scams at least one time in the period from January 1 to December 31, 2020.

99% of US government employees run outdated Android OS’s

Perhaps even more shocking is the fact that a staggering 99% of US government Android users run on outdated operating systems, exposing them to hundreds of vulnerabilities. 

For example, as many as 22.8% of the US government staff that have Android devices still use the Android 8 operating system. This version of OS is called Android Oreo and was released to the public on August 21, 2017. 

Currently, this operating system has 636 known vulnerabilities. We can expect countless new attack vectors to surface as time goes by.

As of March 10, 2021, the newest Android operating system is version 11. It was released on September 8, 2020, but only 0.08% of US government workers have updated their phones to this release. 

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