The importance of cybersecurity awareness to reduce the cybercrimes rate due to the human factor and explaining cybercriminals' approach to exploiting the COVID-19 crisis

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Cyberattack rates are steadily rising and show no signs of stopping. Different factors impact the facilitation of cyberattacks, yet humans are the most vulnerable link to organisations' cybersecurity systems: human error is the topmost factor that has helped cybercriminals attack over the years.1 Many organisations with strong cybersecurity systems suffer from cyberattacks due to employee mistakes. The issue with many organisational cybersecurity approaches is that they tend to focus on one defence – technical. 2 To reduce employee errors, a training programme that aims to increase cybersecurity awareness among employees should be applied as part of proactive cybersecurity, which is important for organisations that seek to prevent cyberattacks. Proactive cybersecurity is unfortunately not as popular as reactive cybersecurity.3 During the pandemic, cyberattacks increased sharply.4 Cybercriminals exploited every single opportunity provided by the crisis. This is the nature of cybercriminals. They will exploit any crisis for their benefit.5 Applying proactive cybersecurity can foster understanding of the nature of cybercriminals and how they think and what they may use to help prevent and reduce cyberattacks.6 Depending only on reactive cybersecurity and legislation cannot be enough to prevent cyberattacks due to cybercriminals' evolving attack methods. Applying both proactive and reactive cybersecurity is an effective defence against cybercrimes.