People are becoming increasingly reliant upon technology to do everything from taxes to provide an evening of entertaining television. Unfortunately, as the dependence on technology increases, so does one’s risk of cybercrime. Using technology to store your personal information, pay for products, and communicate means that cybercriminals have unprecedented access to your personal information. With the rate of cybercrimes increasing, it has never been more important to learn how to keep yourself protected.
Use Strong Passwords
VTech Support describes how cybercriminals are no longer just targeting governments or large-scale organizations; increasingly, they are going after individuals and small businesses. This is because individuals and small companies are seen as easy targets. However, knowing how to stay safe does not have to be complicated; doing something as simple as using a strong password can help to prevent against a cyberattack.
Your password is your first line of defense when it comes to protecting yourself against a cyber-attack. You should make sure to always be using strong passwords for all of your accounts. A strong password will contain more than eight characters, be made up of a mixture of letters, numbers, upper and lower case. A strong password will also contain at least one special character. You should never use the same password for more than one account and change all of your passwords at least twice a year.
Use Two-Factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication can provide you with another layer of protection. Once you have entered your password, you will be asked to input details that have likely been sent to your phone. Going through this second stage when signing into an account will only take a few seconds but helps to provide you with a very useful layer of added protection.
Be Mindful of What You Download
Before downloading anything off the internet, you need to be sure that what you are clicking on is authentic and credible. This is because you might inadvertently be putting yourself at risk of a malware attack. A malware attack, otherwise known as a ransomware attack, is a form of cyberattack in which a cybercriminal hides a piece of malicious software in a seemingly harmless link. When you download this malicious link, you might experience one of a number of effects, such as data theft or computer breakdown.
You should always be very careful when you are using public WIFI, as it is likely not encrypted, which means that a cybercriminal can easily see everything you are doing online. Therefore, you should avoid using public WIFI whenever possible and never input sensitive information on public WIFI. If you have to use public WIFI, you should also use a VPN and security software to keep yourself safe.
Spot the Warning Signs
Even if you have adequate security measures in place, some forms of a cyberattack can be difficult to prevent; this is when you need to be able to identify the potential warning signs. Being able to spot a phishing attack, in particular, can be a great help. A phishing attack is a form of cyber-attack in which the cybercriminal will disguise themselves as a responsible party to trick the victim into clicking a link or sending their sensitive information. In addition, the cybercriminal will often try to motivate a strong reaction in the victim to reduce their ability to identify the threat. Being able to spot cybercrimes of all kinds can help you to amend your behavior and stay safe.