Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2021 – Why is Cybersecurity Important?
WHY IS CYBERSECURITY IMPORTANT?
Cybersecurity is the art of protecting networks, devices, and data from unlawful access or criminal use and the practice of guaranteeing confidentiality, integrity, and availability of information. Communication, transportation, shopping, and medicine are just some of the things that rely on computers systems and the Internet now. Much of your personal information is stored either on your computer, smartphone, tablet or possibly on someone else’s system. Knowing how to protect the information that you have stored is of high importance not just for an individual but for an organization and those in it.
DID YOU KNOW?
• As of 2021, there is a ransomware attack every 11 seconds, up from 39 seconds in 2019 1,2
• 43% of cyber-attacks target of small businesses, and they have grown 400 percent since the outbreak began 3,4
HOW CRIMINALS LURE YOU IN
Companies and organizations in the United States, as well as multiple foreign governments, were harmed by theft of intellectual property, trade secrets, and other highly valuable information by Advanced Persistent Threat (APT). By establishing initial access, the APT exploits user and administrator credentials, enables lateral movement within the network, and locates high value assets to exfiltrate data. To reduce risk, network defense procedures should be implemented and comply with best practices. These guidelines can facilitate managing the risk and mitigating the threat.5
• By stealing compromised credentials, an attacker can obtain victim identity information
• Criminals create new email accounts and hack existing ones to conduct social engineering attacks
• Spear phishing emails are sent containing malware and malicious attachments
• Malware is used to exploit various common vulnerabilities and exposures by exploiting software vulnerabilities in applications.
• Use antivirus software. Antivirus software is very important. It’s an important protective measure useful against cyber criminals and malicious threats. It can automatically detect, quarantine, and remove types of malware. Automatic virus updates should always be enabled to ensure maximum protection against the latest threats.
• Keep software up to date. Attackers have been known to take advantage of well-known problems and vulnerabilities. Making sure you install software patches and utilizing automatic updates for your operating system will help protect you from attackers.
• Utilize a firewall. Firewalls can prevent some attacks by limiting malicious traffic before it can enter a computer system. It also restricts unnecessary outbound communications. Some devices and operating systems come with a firewall preinstalled. However, makesure your device is currently using a firewall and that it is configuredproperly.
•Utilize strong passwords. Creating passwords that will be difficult for cyber criminals to guess is vital. Use different passwords for different programs and devices. It is also best to use long, strong pass phrases or passwords that consist of at least 15 to 16characters. Use password managers to generate and remember different, complex passwords for each of your accounts. Read the Creating a Password Tip Sheetfor more information.
•Double your login protection.Enable multi-factor authentication (MFA) to ensure that the onlyperson who has access to your account is you. Use it for email, banking, social media, and any other service that requires logging in. If MFA is an option, enable it by using a trusted mobile device, such as your smartphone, an authenticator app, or a secure token—a small physical device that can hook onto your keyring. Read the Multi-FactorAuthentication How-To-Guide for more information.
•Watch for Phishing.The goal is to gain information about you and use your information to make unauthorized purchases or gain access to a secure system. Besuspicious of unexpected emails and always check email addresssourcesto make surethe email isnot coming from a fake website.
1.Talalaev, A. (2021, June 30).WebsiteHacking Statistics You Should Know in 2021. Patchstack.
2.Team, E. (2021, August 11).2021 Must-Know Cyber Attack Statistics and Trends. Embroker.
3.Small Business Trends LLC. (2020, March 10).43% of Cyber Attacks Still TargetSmall Business-RansomwareOn Rise. Small Business Trends.https://smallbiztrends.com/2019/05/2019-small-business-cyber-attack-statistics.html
4.Charlotte Today. (2021, August 30).Protecting small businessesfrom cyber attacks. WCNC-TV.https://www.wcnc.com/article/entertainment/television/charlotte-today/protecting-small-businesses-from-cyber-attacks-malware-ransomware-viruses/275-168d2459-085a-4515-8f4e-6c6f9a59abb3
5.CISA. (2021, July 19). Tactics, Techniques,and Procedures of Indicted APT40 ActorsAssociated with China’sMSSHainan State SecurityDepartment. CISA. https://us-cert.cisa.gov/ncas/alerts/aa21-200a
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