With the internet‘s increasing prominence in everybody’s lives (and not only in their private lives but with work as well), time spent online is on the increase – unfortunately, so is cybercrime.
Cybercriminals are smart. They need to keep up with the ever-changing online world, and because of this, we need to keep one step ahead to keep ourselves safe and the people around us.
There are a few simple rules which we can follow to make this easier for us and harder for the cybercriminal.
Change Your Password Regularly
Ensure you change your passwords regularly and that they are of the correct ‘strength.’ This means having a password of at least 12 characters long. It should contain at least one number, a capital letter, a lower case letter, and a special character like a question mark. It is also better if this password is not actually a word, so it is harder to guess.
Be aware that cybercriminals can use social media platforms to try to guess your password, so be careful when using nicknames, pet names, and so on.
Invest In An Online Security Service
Employing an established IT security service to monitor your online security can take a massive weight off your mind. A security service will carry out risk management assessments and data protection audits to keep your information safe.
They may also emphasize where you need to improve your own security to avoid issues in the future. Should you find that you have been a target for a cybercriminal, a security service will know how to act and promptly avoid as much damage to you as possible.
Unfortunately, there are such things as phishing emails: cybercriminals trying to catch you unawares and gain your sensitive data to either use or sell it on to others at a price. However, you can do a few things to make their life a little bit harder in this respect.
Be aware of phishing emails and to who you give your email address. Never reply to a spam email or include any personal details, including passwords within an email. Keep on top of your email subscription, so you are aware should you start getting rogue emails.
Emails that are poorly written or have a sense of urgency could very well be phishing emails. There are many different ways you can report a phishing email if you think you have received one.
There are other ways to help protect your data against cybercriminals and make their work a little harder, but obeying the three rules should cover many of the bases. Change passwords regularly and make sure that they are strong passwords. Do not volunteer any personal information on social media sites, potentially leading to someone guessing any of your passwords.
Lastly, watch your inbox and be aware of whom you give your email address. Don’t reply to any spam emails, and be mindful of any that are poorly written or have a sense of urgency about them.