How can we prevent and fight cyber crime on a daily basis? If we want to make 2014 a secure year, there might be some good resolutions to make involving the way we work and operate in the digital space everyday. Here I’ll share five 2014 resolutions I think will assist in maintaining your company’s (and personal) digital security this year.
#1. “I’ll maintain current software and updates”
One of the best ways to reduce the risks of malicious activity on one’s devices is applying the latest patches and service packs to keep software updated. We should all pay attention to security updates, as out of date software tends to be the primary target of cyber criminals trying to exploit any type of weakness in their victims.
#2. “I’ll never…”
There are a few things we should all try to avoid as much as we can. So, let’s make this resolution for 2014 cyber security: I’ll never…
- open attachments from unknown people
- download unfamiliar software
- share passwords or pass-phrases
- click random links
- propagate virus hoaxes
- accept files from strangers (USB or shared)
For more examples see: Cyber Threat Protection for Executives to be Included in 2014 Business Plans
#3. “I’ll practice the principle of least privilege”
How can we reduce the so called “cyber attack surface”? According to the principle of least privilege (PoLP or “principle of least authority”), computer users should have minimal profile privileges, based on their job’s necessities. Unnecessary privileges, in fact, can result in computer compromises and exposure to malware.
So let’s not log into a computer with admin rights unless we really need to. Simply browsing the Internet with a high-privilege account can lead to unwanted reformatting, file loss and much more.
#4. “I’ll get help in internet monitoring”
Big companies and government bodies are subject to an incredible amount of cyber threats, which can literally destroy their organization, finances and reputation. Although best practices in digital security are often taken into account and shared with all employees in so called “digital policies”, the weakest link effect applies here, and little mistakes can cost millions in reputation, theft and time.
This year add some form of external internet monitoring platform to proactively reduce the risk of cyber attacks, data loss, reputation breaches and many other types of illegal activities that damage companies every single day. This could setup on a personal, political or enterprise level.
#5. “I’ll treat sensitive data carefully”
We should be aware that sensitive information is at risk when dealing with cyber crime. Oftentimes, that is the only asset such criminals are interested in. When creating and naming files, we should avoid entering unnecessary details. Sensitive data should be collected, stored and shared according to legal and functional requirements and specific uses.