Technology is advancing: while it has brought sensitive platforms to our palms, it has also enabled cyberattackers to get into our computers and find out everything about us we would never wish to disclose. Though cyber threats are growing in number and popularity, thanks to encryption technologies that we can now choose to control what we want to share online! With quick tweaks and adjustments, we can achieve maximum cybersecurity. Read this article to the end to discover how you can take back the control and play your part in preventing data leaks.
What is a data breach?
Data breaches are incidents where users’ privacy has been compromised due to data leaks or unauthorized access. The number of corporate data breaches is growing exponentially, especially as we continue with the global lockdowns and promote remote work arrangements. Talk about famous giants Canva, Dubsmash, Zoom and Australian Catholic University: all have faced massive data thefts between 2018 and 2020 because of neglecting cybersecurity standards and so, users got a lot to learn from these terrible accidents.
Steps to Prevent Data Leaks
- Use a VPN
2. Install an antivirus
Like a VPN protects users on the network while their data is in transit, an antivirus program can protect users on device level. It can diagnose potential data leaks by assessing the security standards of apps, even before users choose to install the app. Most antivirus programs have ad-blockers and do not sell or store information. We suggest users stay away from antivirus programs that sell advertisements because they might also be participating in data leaks.
3. Use a separate email account for professional work
If you are working from home and don’t have a separate, official email id, do signup for a new one rather than using your old email account for professional work. Most importantly, if you are habitual of accessing online banking platforms like Paypal, we suggest you signup for a new email and keep it solely for the purpose of banking. Avoid communicating through that email id to keep your sensitive banking information secure and private.
4. Use strong passwords
Create complex passwords for all online platforms. They should be unique, and should never contain your personal information. You can either create one based on a random sequence of alphanumeric and special characters or use a third-party password management app for this purpose. For added security, you can also enable 2 Factor Authentication.
5. Keep a check on social media profiles
Cyber Attackers often start with cyberstalking and social media accounts are their favorite platform to initiate such attacks. They may send you malicious links, spyware, malware, adware or ransomware to gain unauthorized access to your data. Follow social media hygiene and make sure your friends or follower list does not have suspicious accounts. If you notice some unknown accounts or fake profiles in your list, report or block them right away to protect yourself from catfishing and phishing attempts.
Privacy and online freedom are the fundamental digital rights of all internet users. By following social media etiquettes and cybersecurity standards, you can keep your privacy and safety intact. Protect your sensitive data and do not become the next victim of a data leak.