The top five cybersecurity blunders to avoid

December 24, 2022
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Due to the widespread use of smartphones and data consumption during the past ten years, there has been a significant increase in opportunities for hackers to access your devices. Overall, consumption has grown, but there is a gross ignorance about digital security and an absence of concern.

In a time when our mobile phones have largely taken the place of our wallets, and young children are spending significant amounts of time online, people with malicious intentions want to hack into other people’s devices and use them irresponsibly. Financial loss and online child molestation are only two negative effects of this digital illiteracy.

Failing to secure their equipment

Any vulnerability in these gadgets might open a door for different bad actors to intrude on our online privacy. When safeguarding their equipment, users should make sure they adhere to the manufacturer’s recommended security measures. Use a biometric lock or a robust PIN lock on cellphones to prevent abuse of the device if it falls into the wrong hands.

Thankfully, most smartphones today include some form of biometric security, such as Face ID or Touch ID on iPhones, and comparable features on Android devices. On laptops, similar choices are available, such as Touch ID on all MacBooks from Apple devices and Windows computers with the ability to enable face or fingerprint recognition with Windows Hello.

If you are using a Windows device, you may also wish to disable “Network discovery” while configuring. As well as the remote desktop capability, if it is turned on (it will make your device invisible on the network). Your Wi-Fi router is an important piece of equipment worth taking into consideration in addition to your laptops and smartphones. Anyone may simply access your network, see or delete your internal data, and even install malware on your devices using a router with weak protection.

Making weak password choices

Never use the same password more than once, as a general rule. Since it’s often difficult for humans to generate and remember secure passwords, everyone should preferably utilize a password manager. There are several possibilities, from open-source and free to paid. 

Nearly the majority of them are rather inexpensive. You may establish lengthy, distinctive passwords (and even usernames) that you don’t need to remember by utilizing a password manager. A master password, which must be difficult to guess, is all you need to remember. For an additional layer of security, you may additionally secure your password manager with a private key or biometric protection.

Failure to use two-factor authentication (2FA)

We discussed the significance of passwords. Having said that, there will always be a chance that you chose an unsecured password. Only by using 2-factor authentication will you be able to remain secure (2FA). When 2FA is enabled, a one-time code will be sent to your phone through SMS, email, or another method. In such circumstances, you will need to take an additional step before signing in. This involves logging in using your login, password, and the code you were given. This code often has a time limit, indicating that it must be used right away or it will lose its validity.

What would occur if you were in a no-network area where receiving SMS would not be possible? We have programs made specifically for these kinds of circumstances, including Google Authenticator or Microsoft Authenticator. These applications may be linked to your internet account (for example, Gmail login) and then produce random one-time codes that are good for one minute. The best aspect is that you can use 2FA even when there is no internet connection thanks to these applications.

Most major services provide the option of 2 Factor Authentication, which may easily make it hard for hackers to access your account.

Failure to use an antiviral

Security has been a persistent danger since the invention of computers due to viruses and malware. We’ve all heard the terrifying tales of computers being internationally ransomed by ransomware like Wannacry.

To keep themselves secure over time, users should set their antivirus software to conduct a background scan once a day. The majority of antivirus programs often provide this option.

Software like Transcript, which does a comprehensive scan on Windows to discover any hidden malware and remove it, is another option for advanced users. Users may also benefit from advanced firewalls like Tinywall, which is free on Windows and is very lightweight. Radio Silence is an app that is comparable for Mac users. However, only experienced users should utilize these. 

Most users can get away with an antivirus product like Avast, Kaspersky, Bitdefender, or Quick Heal.

Using risky onlin practices

Unsafe surfing practices can be a big factor in how easily malware can access any system. Additionally, this spyware can allow anyone to remotely manage your gadgets or, worse still, spy on your activities. Dr. Gaurav Gupta, a cybersecurity specialist, recently spoke with Axetue on the significance of safe surfing practices and the limited or nonexistent use of external devices like USB drives.


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