QR Codes: A Complicated Convenience
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We hate to sound redundant, but we can’t help but reiterate how much life has changed since the pandemic.
The education system made a shift with online learning for several schools across the country.
The medical field had great losses of medical professionals due to mandates and conflicts around what was and wasn’t “pandemically acceptable”.
There was a surge in online purchases and everything about our every day life including running errands was no longer business as usual.
An additional added change was how businesses began to conduct there in person transactions. If you notice many businesses specifically restaurants requested that customers scan a QR code in order to gain access to menu features. Actually most businesses began using QR codes to avoid the touching of surfaces while eliminating the need for person to person contact.
There is a price for convenience.
The very things that make our life much easier sometimes create the most complications. Since we’re on the topic of QR codes let’s discuss how QR codes can cause what we’d like to call “complicated convenience”.
For those who are unfamiliar with the term QR code it is a code that allows data to be read quickly by a device. QR codes can be scanned using a camera (specifically on a phone device) and that code creates a response within the phone that allows access to the information that is being deciphered.
For example, you scan a QR Code at your favorite juice bar and the juice menu will populate if you scan a QR code at your local fitness center then perhaps a sign-in screen for the fitness center will populate; it simply depends on the code, business, and/or the type of service being offered. QR codes have a URL and that URL is immediately present as an option to tap on the minute the code is scanned by a device.
Here’s where it gets a little tricky…..
According To an online article written in The Conversation entitled “How QR codes work and what makes them dangerous” author Scott Ruoti writes..
“The QR code URL can take you to a phishing website that tries to trick you into entering your username or password for another website. The URL could take you to a legitimate website and trick that website into doing something harmful such as giving an attacker access to your account. While such an attack requires a flaw in the website you were visiting such vulnerabilities are common on the Internet. The URL can take you to a malicious website that tricks another website you were logged into on the same device to take an on authorized action. A malicious URL could open an application on your device and cause it to take some action.
The author goes on to state….
“ It is critical that when you open a link in a QR code you ensure that the URL is safe and comes from a trusted source just because the QR code has a logo you recognize doesn’t mean you should click on the URL it contains.”
Cyber family we think it is our duty to make you aware of all possibilities specifically dealing with your personal business and personal life. While cyber security hacks do not necessarily make the headlines each day, it is something to consider as we continue to transform and transition into a more technological advanced society. Many people are working from home and the majority of our lives require some form of technology. Let’s not get caught out there no matter how convenient an option appears to be.
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