No company wants to be hacked. Unfortunately, cyberattacks are on the rise and small businesses are the most popular target.
While some hackers will aim to directly extort money from you (for example, via a phishing scam or a ransomware attack), others will aim to infiltrate your system undetected so that they can steal important data and sell it on the dark web. These five tips will help you defend against both types.
Change passwords regularly
Changing your password regularly makes it much harder for hackers to try and gain entry to sensitive information. It’s possible that hackers may have already found your log-in details and put them up for sale on the dark web – if you change your passwords regularly, you can rest assured that anyone with access to these details will only have access to your old password. Make sure that you’re using different passwords for different log-ins. There are password generators that you can use to create complex passwords.
Keep software updated
Software that has not been updated is likely to pose a security risk and could be another form of access for hackers. Make sure that you’re regularly updating software whenever an update is available – this may involve restarting your computer if you often leave it on standby. If you’re using old software that is no longer supported, you may want to consider buying new software altogether as this can be a prime form of entry for hackers.
Outsource your IT security
When it comes to fending off network attacks, the best defense is often to outsource managed IT services that can keep your network monitored. You can find these services at sites like www.f1networks.com/. Such services may also be able to offer cybersecurity advice on aspects such as data recovery and password management.
Use a VPN when on the go
A virtual private network (VPN) can help you to maintain privacy when using the internet on the go. Public networks aren’t always particularly secure and you could find that hackers exploit these insecurities to gain access to your devices. When you use a VPN, information such as your IP address is kept hidden from hackers so that you can use the web safely. This guide at www.forbes.com/ delves more into VPNs and how you can use them.
Scan emails and websites for threats
Hackers may sometimes use tactics to lure you to malicious websites – these websites tend to contain malware that is then automatically downloaded onto your computer. You may stumble across these sites while using search engines or by clicking on ads, but the most common way of ending on these sites is by clicking on links in phishing emails. By installing scanning tools onto your computer, you can scan each email and website before you click on it, preventing you from haphazardly downloading malware. Given that phishing emails are now becoming highly sophisticated (sometimes even sent from addresses of people you know) it’s important to have these tools in place.