Cybersecurity is becoming increasingly important in a world where so many people rely on digital tools for business and communication. Hackers and online scammers are very adaptive and highly creative in finding new ways to breach security protocols. Therefore, every individual and organization should learn the basic concepts of cybersecurity.
Make no mistake – the threat is real. There is a cyberattack every 39 seconds, while the US authorities report a 300% increase in digital breaches since the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic.
These and many other warning signs should make you and your team rethink cybersecurity measures and spend some time figuring out the fundamentals in this field. Here are 7 important measures to keep you and your business safe.
Corporate-level Education is a Must
How can you expect employees to understand the rules of cybersecurity if you don’t teach them? Proper employee training is essential in 2021. After all, a business is only as strong as its weakest link. Indeed, all it takes is one employee clicking on a phishing email to comprise your entire companies security. Therefore, you better find the most appropriate way to organize employee training.
Jake Gardner, an IT writer, states that cybersecurity training is not a one-time thing. “On the contrary, you have to organize tutorials and learning sessions periodically and help your team to keep in touch with the latest online safety tools and mechanisms.”
Use the Right Cybersecurity Tools
Speaking of safety tools, your organization should always stay up to date with the latest achievements in the field and deploy cutting-edge technologies to protect your company. For instance, some of the finest platforms for small businesses are Comodo, Cloudflare, CSID, and Norton Antivirus. There are many other tools you can test for free, so make sure to do the homework and find the right cybersecurity programs for your team.
Use a VPN for Remote Work
The COVID-19 crisis doesn’t look like it’s disappearing any time soon, which probably means that your employees are still working remotely. A report reveals that more than 40% of remote employees are accessing confidential business information while using unsecured personal applications.
This is why everybody has to use a VPN for online protection. VPN stands for Virtual Private Network and it encrypts data you send and receive over the Internet. In other words, no one can see what you are doing online and steal sensitive work-related information from you.
Browsing with a VPN is one of the easiest ways to achieve maximum privacy with a simple setup.
Remember to Set Impenetrable Passwords
We feel kind of awkward writing about passwords in 2021, but the truth is that too many people still don’t realize the importance of setting a strong security code. Let us remind you of the basics here:
- Don’t use personal names and private information in passwords.
- Don’t use a simple password like ‘qwerty’ or ‘123456’.
- Combine capital letters, small letters, and numbers to build a superior password.
- Don’t use the same password for every account.
- Passwords alone aren’t as effective as using two-factor authentication (The OpenWrt admin who was breached had a strong password but no 2FA).
- Changing your passwords every few months is an effective way to significantly decrease your attack surface.
Don’t Forget to Update Your Digital Systems
Updating your digital systems seems like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised to learn that businesses and their employees don’t really pay attention to system updates and upgrades. You should not fall into the same trap, so do your best to update every tool, apps, operating system, or program as soon as you receive a notification.
Hackers are often using bugs in older versions of software to breach your defense. Therefore, it’s important to consistently monitor and updating your programs for patches and fixes.
Beware of Remote Work Threats
A lot of employees love working from home, but it comes with a whole smorgasbord of cybersecurity threats that your IT department must pay attention to. It is necessary to monitor employee activity around the clock due to:
- Increased risk of phishing attacks.
- A growing number of ransomware and malware attempts.
- Low protection levels of home-based devices.
- A lack of clear communication between employees and IT support agents.
Mind the Privacy When Going Online
We’ve heard too many people claiming they have nothing to fear online due to the fact that they are not doing anything illegal. This is, of course, irrelevant to hackers and to your overall cybersecurity piosture. 99% of other Internet users aren’t engaging in illegal activities, but it doesn’t prevent hackers from attacking.
Privacy is essential to your cyber safety. Your personal information is constantly under attack and the fallacy that “you have nothing to fear” regularly endangers your data, your money, and your identity.
The Bottom Line
If there is one thing that should make individuals and businesses worried in 2021, it should be cybersecurity. The danger is real as the number of malicious attacks keeps growing at a steady rate. Your team should pay attention to all of these aspects of digital security. After all, it’s the only way to stay protected around the clock and avoid losing important data or money.