8 Proven Cybersecurity Practices to Protect Your Data

Cyber attacks are now more widespread than ever before. By just clicking a malformed link you can get yourself "hacked". Here hacking implies to loss or theft of important data and sensitive information.

Each year, such hacks cause billions of dollars in loss for individuals and businesses. And this is just the tip of the Iceberg. Cyber attacks are more than just these personal hacks. But with the advent of social media a lot of personal data is being shared online. Staying safe is of utmost importance at this time.

But with the advent of social media, a lot of personal data is being shared online. Staying safe is of utmost importance at this time.

No matter what category a cyber attack falls in, you should be vigilant to protect your data.

woman in black hoodie holding a bank card showing cybersecurity
Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko on Pexels.com

In this article, I will discuss the best practices to protect your personal and business data from cyber-attacks and hacks. Be sure to follow these and use relevant tools that can help you in the cause, such as SCA tools and more.

Click Wisely

This is the very first thing that you must take care of. Clicking on unwanted links from unknown people can cause you much harm.

Stay alert and vigilant when opening attachments, clicking, links in emails or messages or visiting websites without any or inadequate security. The theft of personal information via links is a common tactic used by hackers.

To acquire your personal information, hackers will often send emails that seem to be password recovery emails, bank statements, or other letters of a similar kind. These may look legitimate but aren't actually.

Use Complex Passwords

It is very important to use a complex password for login and preferably complex and unique passwords for each website. If you cannot remember your passwords, be sure to use a password manager. If you use the same password across several platforms, the security of your account can be compromised, if even a single site gets hacked.

You may not know, but it is even possible that your password is hacked already and you have been pwned by someone.

Use Two-Factor Authentication

Unique and complex passwords are great. But with two-factor authentication (2FA), you can add an extra layer of security to your account. In this, you can use a mobile number, a physical device or a 2FA application to generate a secured 2FA code or OTP, which only lets you log into your account.

This is currently one of the most secure methods to secure your account.

Update Your Systems

If you are using an outdated operating system, you are prone to hacks, no matter what other cybersecurity practices you apply. Always make to update your operating system to the latest version and check for updates every now and then.

Don't forget to update the key apps and software like browsers, email applications and password managers to the latest version as well.

Deploy Firewalls and Anti-Virus Software

If you keep everything up to date, it is tough that anyone can put viruses into your computer. It is, however, recommended that you use an antivirus and a VPN. Antivirus and VPNs help you from not only malicious software, and viruses but also phishing attacks, Trojans, spyware, and other means. Your computer can defend itself with the help of a VPN and an anti-virus software. You should check your software and firewall often to protect yourself from cyberattacks

Avoid Online Debit Card Payment

You can improve your online safety by taking additional care while doing financial transactions and making payments online. When purchasing services or products online, avoid using debit cards or other forms of payment tied to a bank. Make your financial accounts safer by using PayPal, Payoneer, Stripe or credit cards. You should also set a limit on your credit cards so that even if fraud happens, it doesn't cost you much.

Stay Away from Unidentified Websites

Be careful about websites that look suspicious or your grandmama shared with you on WhatsApp telling you that you'd earn some cash if you click a link. Some of these sites may have malicious drive-by downloads that could put your system data at risk.

When you are attacked in this manner, your computer will get infected even if you take no action. Malware will be downloaded and installed on your computer if you only visit the website's URL. You need to steer clear of websites like this and look at more well-known and trustworthy ones instead.

Keep Your Downloads to a Minimum

Most of the time, hackers will get access to a computer network or system via downloads. Put limits on what you may download to keep your systems and data safe. Avoid downloading and installing programs or browser extensions that aren't required.

That's all. Stay safe, stay well.