The internet has become a space riddled with malicious links, trojans and viruses. Data breaches are becoming more frequent, and unsuspecting users are more vulnerable than ever before. When one click can cost thousands, and even millions, users need actionable to-do’s that can help them stay alert and safe online. Here are our top 10 cyber security tips for your users:
1. Clicking Without Thinking Is Reckless
Just because you can click, doesn’t mean you should. Remember, it can cost you a hefty sum. Malicious links can do damage in several different ways, so be sure to inspect links and ensure they’re from trusted senders before clicking.
2. Use Two-Factor Authentication
It’s important to have a strong password, but it’s even more imperative to have two-factor, or multi-factor, authentication. This method provides two layers of security measures so if a hacker can accurately guess your password, there is still an additional security measure in place to ensure that your account is not breached.
3. Look Out for Phishing Scams
With over 3 billion fake emails sent daily, phishing attacks are some of the greatest cybersecurity threats as they are very easy to fall for. In a phishing attack, a hacker will pose as someone that the recipient may be familiar with to trick them into opening a malicious link, divulging important credentials, or opening software that infects the recipient’s system with a virus. The best way to be on the lookout for phishing scams is by avoiding emails from unfamiliar senders, look for grammatical errors or any inconsistencies in the email that looks suspicious, and hover over any link you receive to verify what the destination is.
4. Keep Track of Your Digital Footprint
When you monitor your accounts, you can ensure you catch suspicious activity. Can you recall everywhere you have online accounts and what information is stored on them, like credit card numbers for easier payments? It’s important to keep track of your digital footprint, including social media, and to delete accounts you’re not using, while ensuring you set strong passwords (that you change regularly).
5. Keep Up With Updates
Software patches can be issued when security flaws are discovered. If you find these software update notifications to be annoying, you’re not alone. But you can consider them the lesser of two evils when weighing up rebooting your device versus putting yourself at risk for malware and other types of computer infection.
6. Connect Securel
Cyber security tips about this have been dished out by nearly every tech expert under the sun, but many still don’t follow this advice. You might be tempted to connect your device to an unsecured connection, but when you weigh the consequences, it’s not worth it. Only connect to private networks when possible, especially when handling sensitive information.
7. Secure Your Mobile Device
Security doesn’t end at your desktop. It’s important to get into the habit of securing your presence through your mobile device as well. Use strong passwords and biometric features, ensure you turn off your Bluetooth, don’t automatically connect to any public Wi-Fi, and download with caution.
8. Beware of Social Engineering
When hackers can’t find a security vulnerability, they’ll attack in other ways. Enter social engineering. This type of attack is more of an attack on the mind of the user, rather than on the device, to gain access to systems and information. Especially with the information publicly available online and over social media, cyber criminals come up with creative ways to dupe users.
9. Back-Up Your Data
These days, storage doesn’t cost much. There’s no excuse not to have a backup of important data. Back it up on a physical location and on the cloud. Remember, malicious threats and hackers don’t always want to steal your data, but sometimes the end-goal is to encrypt or erase it. Back it up to have an ultimate recovery tool.
10. You’re Not Immune
The most harmful thought you can have is “it won’t happen to me,” or “I don’t visit unsafe websites.” Cybercriminals don’t discriminate in targeting all sorts of users. Be proactive. Not all mistakes can be undone with “ctrl + Z”.