Cybercriminals, disgruntled or neglected, malicious crackers and rogue nation-states lurk on the Internet in search of valuable information to steal from organizations and individuals with relative impunity. Cybercrime remains a low-risk, high-profit crime.
Is it finally time to take seriously the need to stop the threat? Absolutely Yes!
How can individuals or businesses improve digital security? You can do this by taking a few basic steps, right now, to improve the security of your computer and your network. Listed below are some low-cost measures:
1. Businesses, organizations, and individuals should develop and use a security plan to protect all information assets and devices.
Treat your plan as a business process and follow best security practices.
3. Increase the level of security awareness among your family, friends and employees.
Let’s examine a brief explanation of each:
Develop a Safety Plan – You must identify what information you have that is at risk, develop a plan to mitigate the risk and move forward to protect it. This statement is true for individuals and organizations.
You remain vulnerable to a breach of computer security if you have not studied what you could lose and have designed a systematic plan to protect your critical assets. Failure to do so ensures the success of an attack.
Follow security best practices – Implementing a security plan, based on industry best practices, should be considered a business process. Determining which information assets need to be protected and who should have access to them is an important component of your plan.
A security best practice would also be to limit the number of people given access to selected information. Next, provide a means to authenticate the identity of authorized users.
Increase security awareness – Employees and individuals should be aware of system threats and vulnerabilities. Most people are not aware of the scope of the information security challenge and need to become familiar with common threats.
One of the best defenses against computer security breaches is a well-prepared user. Cybercriminals and other unauthorized persons must identify vulnerabilities and exploit them to attack. Users, following simple techniques, can limit the success of cybercriminals who would enter valuable systems. For example, the use of complex passwords (at least 11 characters long with upper and lower case letters and a special character) can reduce the chances of a security breach.
Implementing a comprehensive security awareness program can dramatically reduce risks. Family members and employees should be informed about how their actions can affect the vulnerability of an information system. Think of security awareness as an excellent first line defense against those who would attempt to attack your system.
There are a number of current and emerging security concerns that need to be addressed. Threats to information assets are increasing dramatically. Now people must start taking steps to protect sensitive information before they, their businesses, customers, or family members are harmed. The security issues that arise are becoming increasingly complex. The vulnerabilities associated with mobile computing and the advent of the “Internet of Things” are beginning to overwhelm us all. Now is the time to wake up and take direct action.