Nowadays you have to worry more about cybercriminals than real thugs and thieves. Even though thieves steal plenty from people, it is the cybercriminals winning this competition these days. With cybercrimes costing trillions every year, cybercriminals have become a real nuisance. And it’s not just the hackers stealing your financial information anymore. Cybercrimes these days have become much more diverse and can include identity theft, security breaches, revenge porn, harassment, bullying, cyber-stalking, and even child sexual exploitation. Even terrorists collaborate over the internet these days.
How to protect your home?
Anyone who uses the internet on any device is vulnerable to cybercrimes so it is of utmost importance that you and your family understand this and take the necessary measures. Here are a few tips to keep you safe while you enjoy your online activities.
1. Always use an internet security suite
Security suites offer real-time protection from threats like ransomware, malware, viruses, and help keep your financial information safe. Many internet service providers offer free security suites along with their internet service subscription. If you are a Spectrum customer or are looking to subscribe to their internet service, then you are in luck because all Spectrum deals include internet service along with a free security suite. You may want to check with your provider if they offer a security suite free or maybe even at a discounted rate. Otherwise, buy one for yourself.
2. Using strong passwords is essential for keeping your online integrity intact
It is good sense not to use the same password for several accounts because if the hacker figures out this one password he or she may be able to access various accounts. Ensure that the passwords are complex and change them regularly. A strong password includes numbers, letters as well as symbols. You can use a password management application to make things easier for you.
3. Keep the OS of all your devices and the internet security suite updated
These updates include patches to help improve your software to protect you against the latest kinds of cyber-attacks. They also remove flaws from your system that can be used against you in a cyber-attack.
4. Make sure that your social media settings are managed to keep all your personal information secure
Cybercriminals can gain a lot of your information with just a few data points. Therefore, it is better to share very little on public platforms. An example is sharing your mother’s name or your pet’s name on social media. These two are very common security questions, so if you later go on and use them to secure an account, chances are you are in trouble because some hacker can probably breach it.
5. Strong Password & VPN
Setting up a strong password for your home Wi-Fi network and using a VPN (Virtual Private Network) to conduct all your online activity is a good practice. A VPN will encrypt all the data going out and coming into your device, thus acts as a second layer of protection to your data. VPNs are a must if you use public Wi-Fi networks often.
How to protect your business?
Now moving on to businesses. It is no longer just the huge multinationals that are being targeted by cybercriminals. These criminals have moved on to lower hanging fruits now. Smaller companies are easier targets, as they are less likely to put much focus on cybersecurity as they have bigger things to worry about, or so they think. Even though cybercriminals gain less from these companies but it also means that they are at a lower risk of being caught. Bigger organizations may be big money but they can also come after the offenders. Therefore, here are a few tips to keep your company safe from cyber-attacks.
1. Regularly update your system
Code defects or exploits are a common way for hackers to gain access to a company’s computer systems. If you do not update your systems regularly, these exploits can go unnoticed for months and even years, making your systems vulnerable to cyberattacks. Therefore, it is essential to keep your systems updated.
2. Using a VPN
A virtual private network or VPN creates an encryption tunnel to transmit the data to and from your device. It technically makes you invisible over the internet, particularly to hackers. As long as you are working through a VPN, these hackers cannot steal your financial information, passwords, or track your activities. Determine the needs of your company and then research a VPN that suits them best. There are several free options available but it is recommended that you use a paid version for your business.
Also Read: What You Need to Know About Business VPN?
3. Keep your employees informed
Employees are the heart of the company. Just as a company cannot function without its employees working towards the goals and objectives, a company’s security system will not be of any use unless the employees collectively work towards its cybersecurity. Therefore, you need to educate your employees about cybersecurity and train them to follow the security protocols to ensure network protection.
4. Data security
Data is your most valuable asset and its safety should be your top-most priority. Create as many layers of security as possible for your company’s security budget. Dividing the data into segments and keeping it in several sources is quite helpful. It may seem a little inconvenient but in case of a security breach, you do not have to worry about the hacker accessing the entire company’s data. Keep all your data encrypted and perform backups regularly. Encryptions ensure that even stolen data is not of much use to hackers.
5. Monitoring of all downloads & installation
Employees should be limited in what they can do over company devices. They should not be allowed to install anything onto company computers without the permission of the IT department. This ensures that they do not accidentally install malicious software that could create havoc in the system.
Cybersecurity is a real thing and you cannot treat it as an afterthought. A security breach of both your home or business network can be a virtual catastrophe. You must prepare yourself for the worst and follow the tips mentioned above to keep yourself and others safe.