Ever since the start of the World Wide Web, along with making it easier for people to connect, it had some drawbacks. As early as the 1970s and 1980s, using computers meant that others may get access to documents you didn’t want them to see. And then, in 1986, there is the recorded hacking of 400 computers—military computers no less—that could have ended disastrous if someone didn’t notice the intrusion.
So, what do you have to do these days to keep your home or office networks from putting you at risk of getting hacked? We compiled a list of five facts about cyber security that’s relevant in 2020.
Make sure you’re protected, so you can have a smooth year ahead.
Ransomware is a Real Threat
Ransomware has been around for a long time and it’s not going away. It’s clear from the recent hacking of Travelex that cyber criminals favour this method of plaguing businesses. They use ransomware such as Sodinokibi to obtain companies’ customer information, requesting a ransom payment and hoping to get rich quick when the relevant company complies.
Simple guidelines go a long way in protecting your own data:
- Make sure no one in your home or company opens phishing emails. If you don’t know the sender, don’t open!
- Software providers regularly create updated versions, often incorporating extensions that can protect you against new types of ransomware. You need to update your programs often.
- As a backup, save your files on a remote server and use passwords & two-factor authentication to ensure data stays secure.
AI: Beneficial Technology Used Against You
AI has helped many businesses function more effectively, because it can analyse sales or economic data much faster than you and your team can. That gives you reports that you can use to make more informed decisions.
The problem is that cyber criminals use this same technique to analyze data fast and find their next victims, such as vulnerable networks.
Machine learning, a subdivision of AI, can also learn from human activity and perform repetitive tasks. Now criminals are using this method to adapt to suit a certain type of behavior and this can get past the defenses of many computers.
Beware When Sharing Your Details
You may be tired of warning emails from your bank reminding you not to share your personal information unless you’re on a secure platform. But the truth is that many consumers still fall prey to cyber criminals who get access to their details:
- Responding to the wrong SMS or email
- Clicking a button on an unsecured site
- Allowing malware on your computer, enabling criminals to spy on you and gain access to what you store on your device
- Using gaming platforms with low security
It’s imperative that in 2020, all users become more vigilant and rethink each online action.
New Technology Brings More Risk
It’s exciting to hear about new innovations. Where we once only had ‘2G’ we’re now already at the fifth generation of wireless communication tech. And with 5G consumers can look forward to less power being used, while enjoying faster transfer speeds.
But it’s not ALL good news. As technology develops, individuals and companies connect more devices to networks. And with each added device, your vulnerability increases.
So, when you plan to upgrade your infrastructure, always talk to your service providers such as managed IT services to see how they can help you lower the risk of falling victim to online crime.
The IoT has changed our lives for the better and your options increase all the time, but it requires vigilance and expert management.
You Need to Rethink Your Cloud Usage
Storing your data in the cloud is still an effective method, which many views as a safer option than using a land-based server. This is a storage method not many consumers understand, but they use it anyway without doing enough research first.
With more advanced cybercriminals, cloud storage needs to evolve too. When you discuss your setup with your managed IT services provider, make sure that they’re up to date with the latest requirements this method of storage needs.
While technology empowers consumers and businesses to do so much more, unfortunately, it all comes with added risks. If you opt to use the tech, make sure you stay up to date with the latest developments, so you can protect yourself where necessary.
Have more tips for other users? Please leave a comment!