Staying safe online

Image by FLY on Unsplash

Written by Kaitlyn Hogg

With six out of ten people spending their time online for over eight hours a day, we are far more vulnerable to online crimes, no matter age or status. However, with the rise of hours spent online per year, there has been a clear increase in the various ways in which you can protect yourself from vicious malware and hackers on a day to day basis. Due to the increase of people working from home during the pandemic being 34.4% in the UK (stated throughout The Life of Remote Work: Current Statistics In the World And Predictions For 2021), the percentage of cyber crime has risen by 64% due to the vast increase of targetable people on a daily basis (as stated by The State of Email Security Report).

Cybercrime definition

Cybercrime is a crime that involves a computer and a network. The computer may have been used in the commission of crime, or may be the target. Cyber crime may harm someone’s security and financial health.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

How to spot malware

Many of us on a daily basis will receive what looks to be harmless emails from companies containing links. They may be inviting you to an interview, asking you to view an invoice, or promising a reward. However, by stopping, thinking, and investigating the company in which the email has been sent from, we could save ourselves and our personal information from ending up in places that we wouldn’t want it to be. 

Another way in which people are targeted is through a  simple internet download file. Something that you thought was a free version of a new game that you had wanted to play, may be a hacker that is looking for personal information. By following some simple steps to protect yourself – avoiding becoming part of the 64% cyber attack increase sounds easy.

How you can protect yourself

Two factor authentication: The extra layer of online security that lies between your online information and hackers. When using two factor authentication, a short number code is sent to your mobile phone, or sometimes email – whilst you, or perhaps a hacker, are attempting to log into something, such as online banking. However, not everywhere supports this form of protection, and therefore you may need to think about using other variations of protection. 

Use a password manager on your computer: Using a password manager gives you the restful feeling of knowing that words within your password cannot be found anywhere in a dictionary. MacOS has Keychain Access as part of the operating system and Windows has Credential Manager. An independent password manager we recommend for use across teams with different operating systems is Lastpass

Stay updated: Software companies will regularly update their products and services in order to provide the safest security in which they possibly can. Therefore, updating your devices as regularly as they need to be – whenever a new software update is released – could maintain the foundations of protection surrounding your personal information and any other information you may be holding. 

Read here for more information on cybercrime and how you can protect yourself against it.