The digital platform brings many pros which all of us are swooning over. However, it is equally imperative to weigh the cons. One of the drawbacks or side effects of the digital platform is cybercrime. In this day and age, people talk about cyberbullying but many don’t talk about cybercrime which is a major threat. Cybercrime is a major threat for this year and continues to be a future problem for multinationals and organizations across the globe.
Even if you are a working professional from a middle-class family, you can also fall prey to this problem. In this article, we will guide you through ten ways with which you can protect yourself from cybercrime. Even if you’re sitting in your office or working from home, hackers and criminals will attack you despite your location. With much advancement in technology and the internet, it is common for criminals to play their cards at any point in time without getting caught.
In simple words, it is a crime that takes place online. Cybercriminals often attack people by hacking their computer networks and devices. There is no length and breadth of cybercrime which is why you can expect cybercriminals to commit security breaches and steal valuable information. Cybercrimes also include cyberbullying, harassment and sexual exploitation of young people.
Following are ten ways through which you can protect yourself from cybercrime in this day and age:
1. Use strong passwords
Most people make silly mistakes of incorporating passwords which often have their date of births and first name letters included. Always set tough passwords and if you are unsure about remembering it, you can always jot it down or share it with your spouse. The tougher your password is, the harder it will be for the hacker to track you down.
Furthermore, the best way is to change passwords frequently. If you have to log in to the same device in your office, you can change the password every week. Carve complex passwords which are a combination of letters, symbols, numbers, etc. If you don’t know how to manage your password on your device you can always seek help from password management applications online.
2. Manage your social media settings
Social media has become a rage down the years with the addition of so many features. Most people make big mistakes of giving out too much information in public which is not even the need of the house. If you are being stalked by a possible friend, you must beware of your information. Manage your social media settings in a way that not much information is available for the public. Cybercriminals need date of birth and some other personal details with which they can do their work. There is no need to reveal your pet’s name online as it is also a frequently asked security question.
3. Talk to your kids about the internet
It is very important in this century to talk about kids about everything. Young kids and teenagers are often naïve to the cruel nature of the world and how tough outsiders can be. You must talk to them about harassment ad bullying. If you are being stalked online by a cybercriminal that person will much likely befriend your child and try to get out valuable information. Therefore you must jot down the security rules in the house and inform your kids about how much information they are allowed to share with a stranger. Even if the cybercriminal gets a hold of your daily routine. He/she will much likely be able to attack your device and email during that time.
4. Don’t click on e-mailed links
Refrain from clicking on e-mailed links. Instead you must type the complete website URL in the address bar or search the website from google. Cybercriminals make best possible use of e-mailed links to get to people’s networks. Even if you see a pop up appearing from the bottom of the laptop screen, you must keep away from it as much as you can. Many cases of cybercrime involve people accidentally clicking on unverified links and getting their computers hacked. Keep in mind it takes a few seconds for people to intrude in your privacy. Therefore you must keep away from such links.
5. Clean your desktop and lock your device
Before leaving for home, you must lock your computer and clear your desktop. Even if you have something very important stored on the device, you should store it in a discreet file or space where it cannot be found from. There are multiple ways in which you can protect sensitive data. Furthermore if you are worried about somebody trying to eradicate that data you can always keep a backup of it in a USB device or somewhere else. Keep in mind everyone has a Smartphone in today’s world which is why it is easy for people just to take a screenshot and do the work they want to. Therefore you must clear your desktop and refrain from opening discreet files when a lot of colleagues are hovering around.
6. Avoid overhearing information
It is common for us as social consumers to answer a lot of questions on the internet. The biggest mistake which most people make is they trust all kinds of sites. There is no need to tell which school you attended or the exact address of your house lane. Every website has its own engineered questions which are not mandatory to answer. So next time you check with a website, you need to make sure it’s a verified URL. Only when you need access to an important site, should then you readily make your information available. Otherwise, there is no need to share personal details online with anyone.
7. Beware of phishing scams
This is the modern-day problem which has caused much trouble more than anything else in this world. Phishing scams happen over emails and can cause massive problems to a person. Phishing emails are very different than regular emails and demand immediate information from the person they’re sent to. If you get any of this email you must not immediately share important information from your side. A phishing email might ask for your credit card number, date of birth and address, refrain from sharing anything. You must block the email and delete it as soon as you see it in your inbox. Some emails directly end up in spam because of their notorious nature. Some emails, if you open will directly hack your computer system.
8. Double-check your work
Sometimes, many problems occur due to miscommunication between people. You must cross-check your work as soon as you are done with it. For example, if there has been a change of password within a company and somebody thinks you did it, you must clarify at that exact moment. Secondly you should save important work in a file which is hidden in a discreet place. Refrain from sharing files on the desktop. Most people overlook these minor issues as a result of which breaches happen rampantly.
9. Keep your computer up to date
It is imperative for the computer system or the laptop to have the latest firewall and security measures. You should not trust Windows 6 to keep you up to date with the latest trends. Most computer devices get hacked because they are not strong enough to withstand cyber-attacks and fall prey to cybercriminals. Therefore your computer must have the latest firewall, windows updates and everything which is the need for a computer system. If your system is not up to date, you must be prepared for a cyber-attack anytime.
10. Hire a cybercrime lawyer in case of an emergency
If you have been attacked by a cybercriminal, you must contact a suitable attorney who has hands-on experience of dealing such cases. Though the damage might not be repaired on the spot, cybercrime attorney will help in tracking down the person so that future attack by the same crime can be avoided. If you are from California and want to look for a cybercrime attorney you must google cybercrime attorney in California just as you would google Orange County criminal attorney to find a suitable attorney in that state. Don’t make any delay in contacting a suitable attorney as soon as you have been attacked online by the cyber-criminal.
Cybercrime continues to increase every single day with not many people taking interest in it and preparing for it. Even if you are very inconsequential at workplace or as a working professional from home, you stand an absolute chance of getting attacked by a cybercriminal just as much as the CEO of a multinational would. Companies which prepare their employees to fight cybercrimes can get rid of such issues. However, those who don’t are the ones who suffer from loss at the receiving end of this criminal act. Therefore you must conduct research on this problem and make others aware of it.