6 Cyber Security Tips for 2022
As our world becomes increasingly digitalized, cyber security is important as ever. Let’s discuss the best practices for how to steer clear of scams.
Most Common Causes of Data Breaches
Noticeably at a faster rate than what was observed a decade ago, more and more of the world’s population have begun to lean upon the spaces of the Internet.
Advancements such as social media and online marketplaces have reshaped how we view and interact with those around us. However, with all the glory these innovations bring with them, so too are brought new ways and methods of exploitation within these places. Scammers and hackers alike have become privy to the ever-changing world around us, and have evolved to take advantage of it.
With this in mind, it would be best to start by highlighting the most common targets of these breaches and work down from there.
That being said, the most common areas targeted by cyber attackers are:
It should also be noted that like in the past, businesses of all types are being attacked by hackers an increasing amount of times. Although these stories don’t make the front page too often, it may surprise many that small and medium-sized businesses are extremely susceptible to cyber attacks, sometimes even more so than larger corporations. This is primarily due to the smaller scale of operations and being an easier target due to the absence of sophisticated cyber-protective measures. In fact, and measly 14% of smaller businesses relayed that they would be ready for a cyberattack, whilst around 43% of cyberattacks are now aimed towards smaller framed businesses.
Choose Strong Passwords & Use a Tool for Password Management
If one of these impacted areas concerns yourself or your business, a great cyber security tip to start with is to strengthen your passwords and take advantage of a password manager to complement them. It is no secret that in this new age, speed is king, and tools such as texting only accentuate such an idea. Because of this, many online users tend to choose an easy-to-remember password for ease of use. Unfortunately, having a convenient password can also make it awfully convenient for hackers to invade your private space and steal your information.
To remedy such an issue, you should always work to create a list of different and strong passwords to use in the place of easily rememberable and hackable passwords. Even computers with Windows and IOS software can generate a strong password for their users to employ. However, as many are acutely aware, strong passwords can prove to be uncomfortably difficult to keep track of and use. It is here when the password management tool finds its place. A password management tool such as 1Password or NordPass can keep tabs on, and even create passwords to use with great reliability. Having both a strong password ready and a password manager to take the burden off the individual is a fantastic way to avoid being scammed online.
Update Your Software Regularly
Another crucial component to guarding your security online, updating software as new patches come helps keep one ahead of hacker’s capability for a good amount of time. Though some may find it inconvenient to always keep up with the latest software, keeping older versions around for longer is potentially dangerous. The risk comes with the idea that the longer hackers have with a certain piece of software, the more they will be able to know how to exploit or work around its protective features. For this reason, exactly, updating your software gives malicious individuals less time to become accustomed to the environment being tinkered with.
Activate Two-Factor or Multi-Factor Authentication
Although not a perfect guard against cyberattacks, activating two-factor authentication when presented with the option is a solid way to keep yourself protected. Simply put, two-step authentication requires the user to not only provide their password but also authenticate themselves through another source such as a code sent via email or text. Therefore, even if a hacker stole your password, they would still need to complete the other form of authentication to log in completely. If you ever do happen to receive an unexpected request to login in, do not go through with it, as it could be a hacker trying to log in.
Be Aware of Common Phishing Scams & Stay Vigilant
An older concept on this list, phishing scams are still working to take advantage of the uninformed. Known to many, phishing scams are those that message the user in an attempt to have them do an action such as clicking a link. If you ever happen to see a message that sounds too good to be true, or suspicious in general, do not follow the line of action being asked of you. Unfortunately so, while many still work on email and telephone to contact their victims, some crafty scammers have advanced enough to use common social media apps like Instagram and Snapchat. With this in mind, make sure to stay alert on all social outlets with messaging features, as scammers are casting their net wider for greater rewards.
Routinely Backup Your Data
A good habit to have in the first place, backing up your data can save you many headaches, and assist in hacking prevention as well. Backing up your data first and foremost protects you from data loss. When an inevitable system crash might happen, some files and pieces of data can get lost. Without routine back-ups, your data could lose itself forever between longer gaps. Backing data up also gives consumers and businesses an advantage over types of ransomware attacks that work to withhold one’s access to data until a payment is met.
Secure & Protect Your Personal Information
With such knowledge of the sophisticated scams out to get you, wanting an extra layer of protection would not seem outlandish or over the top. A lesser-known method of doing this while not burning a hole in your pocket would be to rent yourself a virtual U.S.-based phone number. By doing this, you would be given free rein to use this number for most of your log-in needs, and keeps hackers even further away from your personal information. We here at Tardigrada.io offer numbers for those on a budget and care deeply about our client’s security.