Cybercrime is one of the most serious threats to modern businesses and extends far beyond hackers stealing bank information.
Cybercrime continues to evolve with the changing technological world with new threats surfacing each year and the only way to protect yourself from cybercrime completely would be to come offline, which simply isn’t an option for business.
So if cybercrime is still on the rise and coming offline isn’t an option, what can you do to protect yourself from an attack?
What is cybercrime?
To understand how to protect yourself from a cyber attack you first need to understand what cybercrime is.
Cybercrime is any crime that takes place primarily online, which means that there are many different types of cybercrime, from revenge porn to identity theft.
What can you do to help protect yourself?
Protection from cybercrime starts with simply using common sense when online, but the truth is, if you hold something valuable, such as data, financial information or opinion, then criminals will want to try and steal it, so here are 8 things you can do to help protect yourself from an attack:
#1 Keep the software you use up to date
If you’re one of the people who continuously skips updates then you could be leaving yourself open to attack through your software.
When software companies release an update it’s usually to fix a bug or to improve their defence against a possible security breach, so it’s in your best interest to take the time to upgrade in order to ensure that you are best protected.
#2 Use a managed IT service provider
Using a managed IT services provider will not only help to reduce your tech-induced stress levels but will also help to improve your online security.
Managed IT service providers will proactively monitor your online systems for threats and are trained to spot early warning signs, meaning that in the event of an attack you are best placed to protect yourselves.
#3 Implement password policies
When employees use weak passwords they seriously endanger the whole business. You are only as strong as your weakest link and so it’s vital to implement password policies to ensure that every person in your company has a strong password. Implementing strong passwords is the least demanding thing you can do to increase your cybersecurity and yet it makes a big difference.
Remember never to use personal information such as birthdates in passwords and to try and avoid successive use of letters or numbers that sit close together on the keyboard. It’s also advisable to change passwords periodically and not to use the same one for multiple things.
#4 Block access to restricted sites with internet filters
Some sites are more commonly targeted by scammers than others and so an easy way to protect yourself from these is to block access by using an internet filter, or pop-up blocker.
#5 Encrypt your wifi network
If hackers are able to access your internet connect then they may have a route into your business so it’s important to encrypt your wifi network so that not anyone can gain access.
Encrypting your wifi also ensures that only your employees are using your internet and your bandwidth isn’t being stolen by freeloaders.
#6 Ensure you have antivirus software installed
It may seem obvious, but do ensure that you have antivirus and anti-malware software installed on all of your company devices and enforce the installation of antivirus software on any computers employees use to work from home.
A virus can break the immunity of your device making it susceptible to at attack so always keep antivirus installed and update it regularly.
#7 Educate your employees about cybercrime
You may have an arsenal of expensive weapons to help protect you against cybercrime but if your employees aren’t security-wise then they could still be your weakest link.
Ensure that all members of staff are aware of the dangers posed by a cyber attack and educate them on ways they can help to protect themselves and your business, it could help them avoid a personal attack too.
#8 Be careful with social media
When protecting themselves against a cyber attack, many companies forget about their social media channels. Social media accounts are like honey pots to hackers as they are often easy to access and cost-effective to use.
An attack on your social media could allow hackers to spread malicious content to your follower, prey on your followers by pretending they are you or gain access to other sensitive parts of your business through your saved passwords.
What are you doing to protect yourself from cyber crimes?