How to Minimize Online Cyberthreats to Your Business

How to Minimize Online Cyberthreats to Your Business



No matter how useful and entertaining the digital world can be, there’s no denying that it’s fraught with dangers, too. Users from the world over have reported being victims of scams, phishing, identity, and credit card theft, among other fraudulent activities.

It’s all the more worrying if you have a business to run. Because you’re not the only one who controls internet use, your employees are likely to fall victim to online scammers undetected, harming your business information technology (IT) structure. More than potentially damaging your business hardware and software systems, cyber hackers can and will attempt to do their main thing—to steal your bank records and, eventually, your hard-earned money.

How can you prevent cyber attackers from threatening your business and yourself? We’ve rounded up some tips to augment your cybersecurity.

Hire Cybersecurity Specialists


How to Minimize Online Cyberthreats to Your Business


Sure, you can have your IT team check on the soundness of your structure. However, in most cases, hiring third-party IT firms like https://www.nettitude.com to assess your business vulnerabilities might be a better option. To do this, your business IT structure—hardware, software, user access, among other important components—will be studied for loopholes and weaknesses. The IT experts will then analyze cyber threats from all angles, and layout strategies and steps to fight off these threats.

Install Reliable Antivirus Software and use it Often


Some applications may be vulnerable to bugs and errors and these program anomalies may be used by cybercriminals to their advantage in accessing and stealing user data. Good antivirus software that’s frequently updated helps detect and clean web-based malware and other computer viruses. Don’t forget to update it often for more reliable protection against new threats and perform frequent scans on your business computers. In fact, IT experts recommend that users scan their computers after downloading files and before opening the downloaded files to make sure they’re free from viruses and malware.


Think Before you Click


Cybercriminals have been working double-time in making phishing scams harder to detect. Phishing, which cyber scammers use to trick you into providing business and personal financial data, is becoming pervasive. Unfortunately, unsuspecting users are still falling into the ugly traps of online phishing.

To get you to enter your pertinent financial and personal data, cybercriminals use fake but legitimate-looking emails to get your bank account details. Here are some tips so don’t become the next victim:


  • If you receive one, don’t click any links as they may redirect you to an online form in an attempt to get your data.
  • Inspect the message for contact details and signatures and check whether they’re official.
  • Check for misspelled words and grammar mistakes. Some websites or links in the message have addressed similar to legitimate sites. If you look closely, though, you’ll see the difference (i.e., wndows.com vs. windows.com).

Some phishing emails threaten you with legal action and will later redirect you to a link to enter your details. Do not click the link. Instead, call the bank or the agency that allegedly sent the message, and ask for confirmation.


Avoid Public WiFi Networks


Most public WiFi networks, particularly those that you can join in without a password, are not encrypted, which means it’s highly vulnerable to cyberattacks, like identity theft or credit card information theft. Advise your staff to avoid free and unsecured WiFi at all costs.


Set your Office Devices to ‘Forget’ all Public WiFi Networks


Some public WiFi networks require you to enter passwords but this doesn’t mean they’re safe to use. Online criminals have been so advanced that they’re able to set up fake WiFi hotspots to get private data, including bank account details, passwords, and other accounts. To prevent your office and personal devices from automatically connecting to dubious networks, remove all public WiFi connections.


Use a VPN for Your Business


A virtual private network (VPN) is an online service that allows you to hide your real IP address and encrypts your online transactions. By tapping into a VPN, you can protect your business online activities, as it effectively hides your digital footprints—the trail of data, which includes your username and password, that you leave when using the internet. The downside? VPN prevents video streaming services and may impact your internet speed.

Use Script and Ad Blockers on Your Browsers 


The rise of cryptocurrency brings a certain level of danger with it, called crypto-jacking. This involves cyberattackers taking over unprotected computers to mine cryptocurrency, typically via your browser. Using the script and ad blockers, as well as disabling JavaScript, can help you protect from this type of cyberattack.

Think of Hard-to-Guess Passwords 


One of the ways to protect your account is to have a strong password. While it can’t completely assure you that your account won’t be compromised, it may discourage hackers from accessing your data.

Enable Two-Factor Authentication


Some may not see the need for adding a layer of protection to a file or account besides the usual username and password. But if you want better protection, adding another authentication process will do you good. Most web-based mail services offer this kind of security, where you link your mobile device and number to your email and they’ll send a one-time personal identification number (OTP) to confirm your identity.


Turn your Bluetooth Off


Even with the existence of file transfer applications, some people may still turn to Bluetooth for sending or getting files within the office setting. Doing this, however, may expose you to the risk of online fraud. A 2019 research study discovered a flaw that allows cyber attackers are able to manipulate and intercept Bluetooth communications.


Update your Operating System


Don’t ignore messages asking you to update your operating system (OS)—it’s for your own good. Cyberhackers are constantly exploring security weaknesses to create malware and viruses to access your system and installing the OS updates with security patches helps strengthen your business against cyberattacks.


Consider using Encrypted Messaging Apps


There’s a reason why most organizations have their own server and internal messaging system. For the most part, they do the job of keeping all messages private. However, it’s not always guaranteed against cyberattacks. To further ensure that your online transactions, emails, chats, and calls remain secure, when you’re not using the office software, consider using apps with strong encryption and security.

Conclusion


Scammers have been in existence even before the digital age, making use of other people’s weaknesses to their advantage. The same principle makes cyber attackers prolific, especially in that they can mask their identities while duping internet users with their hard-earned money. By making cybersecurity a priority, your business can remain resilient against these cybercriminals.

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