To understand cyber security, first, we will need a concrete definition. According to Wikipedia, cyber security is basically precautionary measures taken in order to protect network and computer system information mismanagement and disclosures.
What we can gather from this is an important component when it comes to keeping your online information safe and away from the wrong people. A very shocking fact that is sure to get you worried about your online privacy is that a cyber-attack occurs every 39 seconds!
And what’s worse is that 94% of primary entry points for these attacks are via email malware. So, not for a second should you deem safe unless you have taken the right precautions against such crimes.
Before discussing cyber security, let’s first learn about the different types of cybercrimes.
1. DDoS Attacks
What this does is, make an online service unavailable and take down the network by overwhelming it with fake traffic from various sources. How they do it is they create networks of infected devices called botnets by sending malware to computers. Once the network is overflown and eventually shuts down, the hacker then accesses the system.
On a similar wavelength as the previous one, these are basically bots that have taken over compromised networks and are externally controlled by hackers. The task of these bots is simple, attack computers by dumping as much malware on the system as possible.
3. Identity theft
This is one of the most extreme and dangerous kinds of cybercrimes out there. Once a hacker has all of your personal information, they can use it to withdraw funds, access confidential information, and perform insurance fraud.
The worst part about this theft is, they can open an internet account in your name and perform the criminal activity and claim benefits via your identity.
4. Social Engineering
One very important thing to keep in mind with this crime is that the criminal can proceed only by directly contacting you by either phone or email. This crime only works if you trust them enough to provide them with all the necessary details they need about you; this includes your personal information, employment, and bank details. Then they either can withdraw funds based on the information provided or will sell your information for some cash.
A very popular form of cybercrime in which the hacker sends you malicious emails or URLs, upon clicking, will provide them with access to your device. The utter state of cyber security is such that they can send these emails to you and not be flagged as spam either. They will trick you by convincing you via email that you may need to change your password or update your bank information, and then they gain access to those accounts.
Now that we have established some popular types of cybercrimes let’s get into some safety precautions you can take to avoid these crimes being committed against yourself.
1. Strong passwords are epic
It comes as no surprise that tougher, more complicated passwords are harder to crack. Try using different password combinations on different accounts, and if possible, avoid writing them down somewhere to be safer. Password should be numbers, special characters, and complicated words are recommended.
2. Computer security is a must
Firewalls are key to keeping your PC secured against such threats. What firewalls do is block access for bogus and unknown sites wanting access to the system. Also, definitely subscribe to anti-virus software which would prevent viruses from entering your PC. Make sure you update the anti-virus software regularly.
3. Spyware blockers
Install anti-spyware on your PC to prevent spyware from infiltrating your PC.
4. Social media privacy
It would surely help to set your social media profiles (Twitter, Instagram) to private to avoid unknown people from accessing your posts.
5. Data protection
If you have highly classified and sensitive files such as your tax returns and financial records on your devices, use encryption to protect them from unwanted people trying to access them.
And those were some of the cybercrimes being committed on a daily basis and how to prevent you from falling victim to their deception. Yes, the internet is a hard place to keep information private; after all, you don’t quite know who exactly ends up using your information.
Among the many other things you can do to prevent cybercrimes from being committed on you, reporting such crimes if you come across one is also a step you should take in ensuring that these threats do not return. All of this feels like you’re in an escape room trying to break out, but remember, there is cyber security ready to assist you at all times.