National Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Becoming a Pro at being Proactive
The second step to becoming a Pro at being Proactive during Cybersecurity Awareness Month is “Securing It.” This means taking preventative steps to ensure that your devices and online information are protected. Did you know that three data breaches occur every day, and 4 million have been reported so far just this year? Data breaches are not uncommon, and are actually becoming more and more frequent as time goes on. Does this mean there is an increase in cybercriminals, or just a lack of cybersecurity? Regardless of the reason, we can still do our best to combat cyber threats by properly “securing it” and implementing adequate cybersecurity practices to our every day lives. “Securing it” is simple, and there are a few cybersecurity tips you can use to prevent cyber-attacks from occurring.
Secure Your Passwords
To help secure your accounts, you should have a strong and unique set of passwords that differ from one another. Your passwords should be lengthy, including at least 12 letters along with numbers and special characters. Some tools will let you generate random passwords, this will better your chances of assuring you have a password that is unlikely for hackers to discover. Consider using a password manager to keep track of your passwords if you have multiple accounts, and then double your log in to give your account an extra layer of security.
Add an Additional Security Layer
When it comes to cybersecurity, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. So why not include an additional layer of security? Helpful tools like multi-factor authentication add additional protection layers for your accounts when logging in. After logging into your account, it would then request a code that you can obtain from your mobile device. This strengthens the security of your account, because if a hacker discovers your log in credentials, it would be unlikely for them to determine the identification code. You might feel like it’s an annoyance to type in a second password, but in the end it will benefit you immensely to make it more difficult for someone to access your personal information.
Avoid Phishing Attacks
We all know that humans are flawed, but did you know that 95% of all security breaches occur from human error? Hackers know this – and will exploit this weakness at all costs. A phishing email is a tactic used by hackers to trick those into clicking on a link they shouldn’t. They disguise these emails to appear as if they came from a reputable source, when it’s actually a ploy to obtain your personal information or download malware to your machine. Providing your business with the appropriate hardware and software protection needed to defend itself against cybercriminals is important, but there’s also more to cyber protection than just robust software. Employees also need to be properly trained on identifying suspicious online behavior. Many small businesses lack the proper security training for their employees, which puts them at a greater risk of experiencing a cyber-attack. Consider using a Security Awareness Training Program (SAT) that teaches users how to spot a phishing attack before it occurs. These programs can significantly decrease your chances of being involved in a data breach, and are highly recommended for the cyber safety of your business. When it comes to phishing attacks, the best way to combat these threats is to learn how to spot and avoid suspicious emails.
The purpose of National Cybersecurity Awareness month is to inform those of the dangers that can arise from lack of cybersecurity, and encourage businesses to take proactive steps that work towards creating a safer and more secure workplace. Cyber-attacks are becoming the norm. In fact, 68% of organizations say they were hit by a cyber-attack, twice on average. By taking advantage of the preventative tools and resources available, and by properly educating your employees on cyber awareness, you can protect your business from experiencing a cyber-attack. Remember to “secure it” this month with cybersecurity, and always work proactively to combat cyber threats throughout all times of the year.
Learn more about how to become a pro at being proactive with cybersecurity by giving us a call at 833-KNOWS-IT (833-566-9748) or shooting us a message!
We’re happy to answer all of your IT security questions.
Written by Jeanine Hasan, Marketing Coordinator at QualityIP.