Are You a Target For Online Hackers? Here’s How to Find Out

cyber attack

As digital technology continues to grow rapidly, the sophistication of cybercriminal attacks grows right along with it.

While IT advancements make it possible to protect your information from online attacks, most people don’t know that they’re at risk until it’s too late. And now may be a more important time than ever to check in on your online security.

Hacking Attempts are Increasing

According to CNET, hacking attempts have increased by over 20% during the coronavirus crisis.

Many attackers have focused their tactics onto taking advantage of the worldwide pandemic by using keywords related to coronavirus to draw people in. Information that appears to come from a credible or helpful source may actually be dangerous malware aimed at getting access to your personal accounts.

The increased frequency of attacks has been amplified by the number of people now working from home.

With an increase in device and internet use at home without private work servers, many don’t have the security they need. And with lots of people in the same household online more often, what one person clicks on may have devastating effects on an entire home network.

Cybercriminals may have greater access to your secure information than you realize.

How Do I Know if I’m a Target?

If your business and personal internet habits are riddled with vulnerabilities, you may not know it until you’re suffering the consequences. Your best form of protection from malicious attacks is prevention, and that requires looking to see if you meet any of these risk factors.

You Don’t Have a Secure VPN

A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, is a proxy server that acts as an intermediary between the user and the website.

A good proxy server acts as a firewall and prevents access to suspicious looking sites. A VPN also provides privacy and security in preventing your own private information from being seen by others.

If you’re accessing data hosted on a cloud storage, it’s important that the cloud is secure as well. This could be the difference between your data being stolen or not.

Your Employees Use Their Own Devices

While secure business networks and work-designated devices often have more security built in to protect company data, many employees may log on to company worksites using their own devices.

If your company has a BYOD policy without clear regulations, employees who may use a private device to check in on work information may inadvertently compromise your security.

Ensure that your office has secure options for employees using their own devices, and make sure the employees know about them and adhere to the proper policies.

Your IT Staff is Overwhelmed

If you have an in-house IT department that is swamped with requests and incident-reports, it may be worth outsourcing to a private IT service provider. By investing in managed IT services, you can supplement your current coverage by getting expert support on the needs your IT staff can’t handle. 

In hiring an outside service, you can get urgent help to critical security issues without overworking your own team and preventing them from being able to do their job well.

This allows your IT staff to focus on their usual tasks while you rest easy knowing that your company information is safe.

You Don’t Have an IT Risk Assessment

If you haven’t gotten your risk assessed by a professional IT company, you may have holes in your business security that you don’t know about. A provider can tell you where your weak spots are and evaluate what safety measures are needed to keep your information safe. 

System vulnerabilities develop over time as hackers learn new ways to break into previously protected data. The solution that kept your information safe in years past might not be up to the challenge today. That is why getting an updated risk assessment can be the best way to assess your security. 

How to Protect Your Data

By working towards fixing problems like these, you can make sure that your important information is protected.

Beef up your security with a secure VPN network, and set office policies regarding employee device use. Know when it’s time to get your IT staff some outside support, and get a risk assessment to evaluate what improvements you need to make. 

If stories of security breaches and personal data attacks keep you up at night, taking a few steps towards fixing your risk factors can help you sleep a lot better.