Top 7 Cybersecurity Tactics
Cybersecurity is a growing concern for everyone in today's digital world, whether it's personal information or company data. Hackers and cybercriminals are always looking for new ways to gain access to sensitive information and exploit it for their own benefit.
Because of these ever-increasing threats, it's more important than ever to stay vigilant and take proactive measures to protect yourself and your company's assets. Our IT pros here at IT Resources have put together a list of the top 7 cybersecurity tactics to help keep you safe. Remember before you think you have a breach, call us. Now, let’s get into this list.
Enhance Online Safety: Try These 7 Strategies
Follow these tips to stay secure whether working from home or surfing the web!
#1. Use Strong Passwords
One of the most basic but essential cybersecurity measures is using strong passwords. A strong password should around 12 characters long and have a combination of:
Upper and lowercase letters
Avoid using easily guessable words or phrases like your name or birthdate. Instead, use a passphrase that is easy for you to remember but difficult for others to guess.
You should use a unique password for each account, so if one password is compromised, your other accounts remain safe.
Password management programs are designed to help you create and store strong passwords for your online accounts. While they can be a useful tool for keeping your passwords organized and secure, if the program's database is compromised, all of your passwords could be exposed, putting your online accounts at risk.
To mitigate this risk, it's important to choose a reputable password management program with strong security features, such as Google, and make sure to follow our next step!
Working From Home? > The NSA’s Guide to Securing Your Network
#2. Enable Two-Factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication (2FA) is an additional layer of security that requires you to provide two types of verification before accessing your account. This could include a password and a code sent to your phone or email.
For instance, if someone uses your password, they will need to input a temporary code that is sent to your phone. This is incredibly secure compared to a password alone, so much so that when this technology was new, the CEO of Valve, Inc. Tweeted out his password to the world, and was unable to have his account compromised.
Most websites and services offer 2FA,
so you should enable it wherever possible.
#3. Use Antivirus and Anti-Malware Software
Antivirus and anti-malware software are essential tools for protecting your computer from malicious software. While many people think that they need to pay for expensive antivirus software like Norton or McAfee, you can get the same protection with Windows Defender, which is built into Windows.
However, antivirus software is not foolproof, and it's important to take other measures to protect your computer. Stay cautious when clicking on links or downloading anything from the internet, and always be sure that you trust the source of any links or downloads before clicking on them.
It’s also advised to run a quick scan of your system every few weeks, just in case. We recommend free-to-scan software such as Malwarebytes, which is great for detecting potential viruses that other software may not pick up.
#4. Keep Software Up to Date
“That annoying update window keeps popping up, but my software works just fine! Why would I need to update?”
We hear this one a LOT! Despite the software working well, these updates often contain security patches that fix vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit. Always keep your operating system, web browsers, and other software up to date to reduce the risk of security breaches. To make it easier, set your software to update automatically in the background.
#5. Be Wary of Phishing Attacks
Phishing attacks are a common tactic used by cybercriminals to steal personal information or gain access to company data. Phishing attacks often involve emails or messages that appear to be from a legitimate source but contain malicious links or attachments.
Always be wary of unsolicited emails or messages, and never click on links or download attachments from unknown sources. If you receive an email that appears to be from a legitimate source but looks suspicious, contact the sender directly to confirm its authenticity.
Here are some common signs that an email may be fake:
- The sender's email address is suspicious or unfamiliar.
- The email contains urgent language and requires immediate action.
- The email contains spelling or grammatical errors.
- The email asks for personal or sensitive information (very few companies will ever ask for this over an email)
- The email contains suspicious links or attachments. Do not click on links or download attachments from unfamiliar or suspicious emails, as these could contain malware.
#6. Backup Your Data Regularly
Make sure to back up your data regularly, storing it either physically on an external hard drive, or digitally on trusted cloud-based storage services, such as OneDrive, Google Drive, or iCloud.
Read More > Cloud vs. Local Backups: Why You Need Both
#7. Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN)
A Virtual Private Network, also known as a VPN, is a service that hides your IP address and encrypts your internet traffic. This can help protect your online privacy and prevent cyber criminals from intercepting your internet traffic. VPNs are especially useful when using public Wi-Fi networks, which are often unsecured and can leave your device vulnerable to cyberattacks.
If you’re the type to take your laptop to a public coffee shop and get to work on sensitive information, it’s definitely worth the cost to use a VPN.
Ensure the Best Security for Your Devices
Cybersecurity is a necessity for everyone in today's digital age. By following these top 7 cybersecurity tactics, you can help protect yourself and your company's assets from cybercriminals. Most importantly, stay vigilant online and never give out any personal information, even if the source seems trustworthy.
At IT Resources, we are committed to helping you enhance your online security and safeguard your digital assets. We are here to provide you with the guidance and support you need to stay safe online.
Discover how our Tampa managed IT team can help you enhance your cybersecurity and protect your digital assets, give us a call today!