As digital capabilities improve and Internet connectivity becomes all-pervasive, cyberattacks have increased. The expanding digital connectivity warrants attacks from threat actors. There’s a new paradigm of digital that puts both organizations and individuals in a vulnerable position. Ransomware is expected to grow, even if law enforcement officers are stepping up their efforts. Data breaches can result from cyberattacks. For the individual who is a victim of stolen data, this can lead to many headaches.
Data Breaches Are on The Rise: Why Do These Attacks Happen?
The primary motivation of a hacker is money. They want to get hold of financial data to transfer funds or perpetrate fraud. Consequently, the financial services and insurance sector has the highest expenditure on cybersecurity. The information technology and services sector comes second. Some cyber groups take advantage of their skills to go after big organizations. Many business owners have blind spots when it comes to cybersecurity because they’re not familiar with the subject. Therefore, there are many flaws, such as weak passwords and bad network design. Successful attacks can have serious ramifications.
Today’s activities depend highly on information systems, digital devices, and data networks. It’s what’s called interconnectivity. For better or for worse, everything is interconnected. Numerous companies have fallen victim to data breaches, and it’s not expected that the situation will get better anytime soon. We see new threats and vulnerabilities emerge. In addition to the US and the UK, India has witnessed numerous cyberattacks in the past. Some of the most significant breaches included those linked to Air India, Domino’s, and Facebook, to name a few. India is the third most cyber-hacked nation.
Not all cyberattacks are as complex as we think they are. Cyber-related incidents often result from exploiting weaknesses that users aren’t even aware of. Hackers have varying skills and resources, and they deploy standard IT tools to gain access to Operational Technology (OT) systems.
Changes You Can Make to Protect Yourself and Your Information Online
These days, a great many services require us to provide some of our personal information. When we supply this data to companies, we trust them to keep it safe from others. Every so often, personal information is released via a data breach. Whether there have been reports of a data breach, keep your information secure. Follow these simple steps from a data breach.
Limit The Amount of Personal Information You Share Online
To best protect yourself from a data breach, limit how much sensitive information you store on certain websites. Never save payment information online, even if you have to re-enter it every time you want to buy something. It’s anything but safe. Storing your debit or credit card information online will put you at an increased risk of your information being stolen. Cyber thieves will use your debit or credit card to make purchases. Difficult as it may be, you should manually re-enter your card information when making online purchases. If the site is breached, hackers won’t have access to your financial information.
Create Complex Passwords for Every Account
If you have online accounts, hackers have most likely leaked data from at least one of them. You need to keep your personal data safe and make sure nobody has access to it. In this regard, it’s recommended to change your most sensitive passwords periodically. They shouldn’t be easy to figure out. Create passwords using 10 characters and combinations of upper letters, lower case letters, numbers, and symbols. If you find that managing different passwords is hard, get a password manager. It might seem intimidating at first, but once you’ve installed it, you can browse the Web as usual.
Check Your Bank Account for Any Changes You Don’t Recognize
Gaining access to bank account numbers allows cybercriminals to do more than just make fraudulent purchases. More often than not, cyber thieves sell raw information to others. For years, fraudsters have used the Dark Web to exploit victims by buying and selling their personal data. If you’ve noticed any changes in your bank account, let the financial institution know about it. You might get the charges reversed. Either way, get a new card and bank account number. Use two-step authentication. Most banks provide this option. There should be more than one password protecting your account.
Stop Websites from Tracking You
In case you didn’t already know, websites and third parties track everything you do online. They collect information about location and browsing habits, to name a few. This data reveals more about you than you’d expect. Website tracking raises the risk of cybersecurity incidents. Firms abuse password mechanisms to get hold of usernames and email addresses. More precisely, they take advantage of the auto-complete option provided by browsers like Chrome, Safari, and Firefox. Use an anti-tracking browser extension to enhance privacy while surfing the Internet. It’ll also prevent malware from running in your browser.
We should expect more cybercrime as threat actors build skills and toolsets. As individuals and firms increase their reliance on technology, they’re exposed to the growing cyberattacks. For malicious actors, it’s easy to get their hands on data and then use the information for blackmailing or other crimes. Cyber thieves are on the rise because they don’t encounter any obstacles. Companies have IT teams or hire security specialists to deal with emerging threats.
But what about consumers? They’re on their own. Anyone who carries out activities online, regardless of their nature, has to protect their identity and assets. If a data breach does occur, you’ll be notified by the company or website. Nevertheless, you might end up hearing about this incident from other sources, like the news. Not everyone will be a victim of identity theft, but it’s better to keep your guard up. In the aftermath, cyber thieves may try to log into your account using your email address and password. Consider adding a security freeze, which is free of charge. It stops identity theft from happening, as opposed to credit monitoring or fraud alerts.