• Misbah Thevarmannil

The Calling For Cyber Hygiene

Technology is getting better and brighter every day. This also pave way for new technologies that can exploit users. While our cyberspaces connect us, automates functions, and bring down the limitations of space and time, it also brings cybercriminals and their threats closer to our home and office.

People are a critical factor in preventing cybercrime. Therefore, proper training of cyber hygiene to society at large and employees are crucial.

What is Cyber Hygiene?

cyber Hygiene

Cyber Hygiene are practices that security professionals, computer system administrators, and other cyberspace users can undertake while engaging in everyday online activities to ensure the Cybersecurity of an organization's network and assets and defend themselves from cyber attacks.”

Cyberspace evolved as a saviour during the challenging times of the pandemic. But it has brought new enemies closer to its users as well. On the one hand, we have a world that is easily connected and converged into a single platform where everyone can connect and rise. When we say everyone, it will include the criminals as well. They can now release attacks from the frontiers of their homes.

Pandemic and its corresponding reliance on virtual platforms which have led to remote working have given rise to cyber-attacks through over 4,000 malicious COVID sites that popped up just in the first months of the pandemic.

It is estimated that there are 300 thousand variants of malicious software released on the internet every day. The cyber attacks in 2021 are predicted to be twice what happened in 2019.

It is predicted that Cybercrimes will cost the global economy $6.1 trillion annually due to the pandemic and a global population that is increasingly entering cyberspace for their comfort as well as breadwinning.

security safety online

In today's highly advanced and dynamic world that is more connected than ever before cyber hygiene is crucial to prevent cyber attacks that steams up from malicious minds of cybercriminals causing security breaches, data thefts, phishing attacks, malware attacks, and more such exploiting attacks and theft.

Most organizations rely exclusively on cybersecurity professionals to protect themselves from these attacks but what they need to understand is that no frontiers are safe without the collective effort of every member or employee in that organization.

Every individual that collectively shares the network and cyberspace of an organization needs to have the minimum understanding and knowledge of ways to keep their frontiers safe from cyber exploiters.

Cyber hygiene also helps hardware and software and networks to run at the best efficiency, speed, and security.

In today's internet engulfed world Cyber Hygiene is as important as personal hygiene for every individual.

A highly cyber active population requires the least minimum understanding of cyber hygiene to keep data safe and well-protected as well as save the user's network and system from getting hacked.

Some practices that can be incorporated in cyber hygiene policy are:

cyber hygiene measures

Regular password changes: Regularly changing passwords can prevent easy access for exploitation.

Two-factor authentication: Multi-factor authentication increases the security to two fold.

Software Updates: using the best versions of software or updating regularly to better versions can save systems security and efficiency.

Hardware updates: Updating hardware is crucial for maintaining performance and compatibility with other hardware and systems.

Limit user rights: providing access rights only to trusted users will help in bettering security and reducing maliciously strategized social engineering

Back up data: Data theft and exploitation should always be expected. A secondary source for back up can reduce the damage of such loose or exploitation of data

Maintain personal data security: Users should use cyberspace with an understanding that personal data security has a correlation with workplace cyber issues as well

In this increasingly vulnerable and dynamic cyber world, creating a culture of practicing cyber hygiene is not an option but a necessity.

Also, do check out our latest post on Zero-Day Vulnerability.

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