Around the world, every February 9 a very special day is celebrated worldwide. We are talking about the Safe Internet Day, 24 hours completely dedicated to highlight ways to make the internet a safer place for everyone with tips, information, videos and more. A leading company in the matter is the well-known ESET, that works hard into detecting scams and threats every day of the year.
Safe from what? Well, if you’re asking this question then you need to keep reading and also you need to start making some changes in the devices that you use to surf the web in order to consider yourself safe. Let’s talk about the term “cybercrime”, a very common one these days. Cybercrime is the word used to describe any criminal act in which the Internet is used as means to commit it.
With the internet becoming accessible to almost everybody, the number of cybercriminals has increased considerably and the lack of information about how to protect yourself while surfing the web if not easy to find, Francisco D’Agostino reported recently.
That’s why this company has a commitment to make the internet a safer place and their work is vital to keep users informed.
After the pandemic started almost a year from now, cybercriminals were handling a playground. With almost a worldwide lockdown and the beginning of a trend that moved millions into working from home as a way to reactivate activities in different countries, cybercriminals had more possible victims than EVER.
According to ID Agent, during 2020 only, 80% of firms were victims of attempts of cyberattacks. This number is extremely worrying, specially in a world that relied on the internet to try to start over.
To give you an idea of the magnitude of the issue, every 39 seconds there is an attempt of cyberattack. This website also shows that 700 million people in 21 countries has experienced some form of cyber-attack, so making the internet secure should be high-priority.
The total increase of phishing attacks, for example, surpasses 600% only during last year and the most common way to scam someone through phishing is with malicious attachments in emails.
Now how are these attacks happening? When we say “attacks”, people usually move to believing something physical, but at the end of the day the results can be way worst because these criminal targets money mostly and your lifesavings could be in danger if you don’t take precautions.
Most common type of cybercrime… phishing.
The most common type of cybercrime is called “phishing”. Physhing.org defines phishing as “cybercrime in which a target or targets are contacted by email, telephone or text message by someone posing as a legitimate institution to lure individuals into providing sensitive data such as personally identifiable information, banking and credit card details, and passwords.”
So, what’s the purpose of doing this you might wonder… well, the information they gather is then used to access financial sites or even committing identity theft, which will most definitely cost financial loss.
How does this type of criminals attract people’s attention? Well, that’s not really hard to do these days. Through email, usually there are malicious attachments so the first recommendation is not to download any attachment unless you know the person that send it and you are confident is legit.
What can I do to prevent it?
The best way to protect your self from a phishing scam is to never let it started. Start having a good offensive in order to enjoy of a great defensive and rest assured that all your moves in the worldwide web are safe for you, your family or your employees.
Keep yourself up-to-date in terms of information about new ways to scam people and take the precautions necessary.
It is also vital that you install and use an antivirus in all your devices, but its also important to keep it updated and in optimal conditions, otherwise it would be less efficient in the face of a cyberattack.
Even though it might sound a bit extreme, using a VPN is a great way to protect your information. The reason is because with these programs, information is cyphered, which makes it harder for cybercriminals to track. There are many programs like these that free to use in the market so do some research and select the one that inspires must trust to you.
Shopping online is another easy way to become a target, so in this case your best offensive is to be sure where you are buying. To be sure that your shopping time is safe, you should look up information about the website, read more reviews about it before making a purchase and check the certificates that the page might have in order to confirm how sure they are.
Playing games is another form of attacking you, and in the same line, fraudulent websites. Even though it may sound redundant, it is imperative that you are aware of where are you putting your personal information in order to protect yourself. That’s why you should be 100% sure that the websites you are using for different purposes are officials.
Last but not least, webcam situations can be really scary. According to Francisco D’Agostino, that’s why it is important to take the action before something bad happens. To help reduce the risk that your webcam can be hacked, your system should be scanned for malware on a regular basis and verify that your webcam’s default setting is the off option. Another way is a security solution that can be configured to warn when an application is trying to access the webcam and to grant or deny permission. And, of course, when it is not being used, cover it.
These are just a few of the ways you can use to protect yourself. The important information to keep from this article is that you are never too safe and is better to avoid this situation by preventing it.