With the year 2021 coming to an end, we can already see record-breaking numbers of data breaches. That is one milestone we certainly wish we could have avoided and one we should not be proud of.
As of October 2021 year, we had already surpassed the total number of data breaches for 2020 by 17%, according to an Identity Theft Research Center (ITRC) report.
Phishing and ransomware continue to be the most present threats that cybersecurity will encounter in 2022.
In 2020, ransomware attacks increased by 600%, partially due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, despite this immense increase, ransomware attacks grew again by 151% in the first half of 2021. This rapid increase in data breaches has involved some of the most significant ransomware attacks in history, including the attack on The Colonial Pipeline.
With all of that in mind, it is safe to presume that the year 2022 will continue to present us with more and more security challenges.
So what can we do to protect our data and privacy? Follow these six tips for data security in 2022.
1. Educate and Train Your Staff
The easiest and most common way for hackers to access your data is through your employees. Often they will send fraudulent emails impersonating someone from your organization and will either ask for personal details, such as user credentials or passwords, or access to certain files.
For someone who lacks experience and awareness, these emails might seem legitimate, and without realizing, with just one click, they can allow the hacker to access sensitive data. This is why training your staff is vital for the companies safety.
One of the most reliable ways to protect against system breaches, data theft, and other types of cyberattacks is to train your employees on cyber attack prevention.
Make sure to:
- Check links before opening them.
- Open only emails that come from the trusted email address.
- Use common sense before sending sensitive information (make sure to have other ways of identifying the person you are talking to, such as phone calls, etc.).
2. Keep Your Software and Systems up to Date
Without proper software maintenance, you are exposing yourself to possible cyber attacks.
Hackers will diligently search for any sign of weakness in your security, and you can be sure that they will exploit those weaknesses in no time. Once you have spotted a security breach in your network, it is probably already too late.
That is why you should always keep your software up to date with all the latest patches.
Unfortunately, many people use the same password for a number of different devices and apps. This can be quite a dangerous practice as only one successful cyber attack is enough for a hacker to get access to all of your devices and data.
Changing your password regularly and having different passwords for each separate device and app is a very effective way of increasing your data security.
4. Secure Data Storage
Backing up and properly archiving your data is essential for avoiding serious downtime and the loss of data, which can result in huge dents in your resources.
The best way to secure your data is to use optimal data storage plans for your company and implement cloud archiving solutions that will help you ensure compliance.
5. Ensure Endpoint Security
Employees often access company resources remotely from multiple devices, such as mobile phones, laptops, and tablets. Organizations then have to keep track of hundreds of devices with different operating systems.
All of these devices create access paths to security threats, which is why it is recommended to use a specific endpoint security software to deal with these threats.
6. Beware of Inside Threats
While the majority of data security threats come from outside of your network, internal threats should not be taken for granted.
Be mindful of who has access to your premises and your data.
One way of limiting access to sensitive data for unauthorized personnel is to encourage your staff to wear a security pass or an ID card at all times.
Your employees should also take extra care when entering access codes to doors and computers on your premises. One of many ways hackers try to get access to your network is simply by pretending to be one of the workers who had lost their security pass or have forgotten their password.
To wrap up
Keeping your network secure and the data of your customers safe is an ongoing challenge. Trying to inform yourself on how to deal with these challenges can be overwhelming at times.
With cyber-attacks getting more and more sophisticated and hackers being ever so resourceful, we need to continue investing our time and resources into our data security.
Following the tips that we have gone through today is a good start in your fight against cyber attacks.