October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month.
National Cyber Security Alliance and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) launched Cybersecurity Awareness Month in October 2004 as a broad effort to help Americans stay safe online. The theme for this year, “Do Your Part. #BeCyberSmart.” aims to educate individuals and businesses on the need to own their role in protecting their part of cyberspace.
In a world where everything is digital (even the T table in CFA), where everything can be found online, it is a perfect time to share security tips to help you stay safe online.
Nearly everyone is online, and the internet has become a necessary part of our daily lives. As a result, it is vital to remain diligent about practising good cybersecurity habits and protecting yourself from fraud or identity theft.
Following these simple tips will help you avoid falling victim to scams and keep you and your loved ones safe online:
Double-check that attachments and URLs before you click
As much as you are curious to see what the link is about, it’s best to verify and confirm the sender because these may be phishing scams that contain links that will download malware on your computer or lure you into entering personal
Information. To verify if an email is legitimate, try contacting the person or company directly via phone or website.
Create and use unique, strong passwords
It’s not enough to have a strong password; you should be using the same passwords for multiple accounts/websites. Increase the complexity of your passwords, and regularly change your passwords for added security. You can also consider using second-factor authentication through apps or via your login page. The second-factor authentication creates and generates different codes for your apps when you log in to a new device.
Think about it before you click it
Several times, phishing URLs are hyperlinked within a text to deceive unsuspecting internet users. If it is possible, try to check the weblinks before clicking any URLs. Bank sites and others carrying personal data can easily be cloned and masked within these URLS.
Ensure safety when you shop online
You love shopping, I get it, I mean who doesn’t love shopping. Well, since you love shopping online, it is best to keep it safe to avoid stories touching the heart. Protect yourself by only shopping on well-known apps and sites with a padlock icon to the left or right of the URL. The ‘s’ at the end of HTTPS means secure and ensures communication between your browser and the web is encrypted.
Keep your devices up to date
It’s easier to hack into devices that aren’t up-to-date because updates to operating systems often contain security patches to fix any weak spots. If your computer, phone, or tablet has an operating system update that you’re yet to install, don’t delay updating it. It would be best if you also considered keeping your antivirus software up to date.
“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and a few minutes of cyber-incident to ruin it.”– Stephane Nappo