October marks Cyber Security Month, and we took this chance to talk about what cyber threats we face every day and how we could avoid them.
It might seem that cyber attacks are far away from us or our business and present the greatest danger only for large corporations. Unfortunately, the statistics say otherwise. Almost half of all the threats strike small businesses. The most common attacks among them are web-based and social engineering attacks, as well as phishing. The latter means fraudulent communication usually through emails, instant or text messaging systems, which tricks you into giving up sensitive details of yours. That could be your passwords or just one wrong click to install malware on your device.
So, what can you do to protect yourself (and your business, family, and friends)? Facing a cyber attack can be a hard hit to a small business, because most of them do not have a cyber security incident plan, and any attack is likely to put them seriously off the track.
But there's a simple solution - awareness! Just think about it: 95% of security breaches are actually the result of human errors. That is educating yourself and your employees about digital security should be on your list of priorities!
How to get started?
Making your life just a bit more ... cybersecure doesn’t have to be difficult! You can start with choosing strong passwords on all your devices. Nobody can remember all those complicated passwords, but password managers like KeePass or Bitwarden are of great use here, helping you to both generate secure passwords and to keep them safe. (No more post-its attached to the side of your screen!) You can also go oldschool and generate your password with the help of a dice and a wordlist. Also, think about protecting your biometric data and not using Face-ID or fingerprint scanning to unlock your phone (even if it’s handy - we know!). Go for a password in this case as well!
To keep your data safe, encrypt all your data and use an additional device such as your old netbook or an external hard-drive to back up your information. And do not forget to secure your communication by using messengers like Signal, WhatsApp or Wire that offer end-to-end encrypted text and voice messages, making them decipherable only for a final recipient.
Supporting the fight against cyberattacks is one of the top priorities for the EU. The GEIGER project contributes to this goal by building small businesses’ awareness of cyber threats, helping to secure their work routines, and creating an ecosystem of competent individuals and organisations that offer support in dealing with cyber threats.