Cybersecurity in the UK: Issues and Solutions

The Types of Cyber Attacks Facing the UK

  • Ransomware Attacks

Ransomware locks up devices and encrypts the data located on them. Once the user attempts to access the device, they’ll be prompted with a request for a ransom. Failure to pay this ransom ends with their device’s data being erased. However, payment rarely gets the user their data back.

  • Phishing Scams

Phishing scams are scams done through social engineering and manipulation. Think about how many spam emails you have of someone promising you an Amazon gift card or warning you that the “IRS” is charging you with tax fraud. These scams promise the victim a reward, scare them into complying, and pretend to be a family member, friend, or coworker, all in order to obtain personal information.

cybersecurity issues
Image credit: pixabay

5 Ways to Secure Yourself & Protect Against Cyberattacks

1. VPNs

Citizens across the UK count on public networks to get work done, whether it’s at the local coffee shop or the guest network at a hotel. Unfortunately, these networks are host to various security issues, many of them existing only due to the unencrypted nature of these networks.

Public networks do little to protect users. Fortunately, there are ways for users to protect themselves, one of them is installing a VPN.

A VPN encrypts data being sent from your device, routing it through a VPN server. This masks your online activity from other people on the network—including cybercriminals—and makes it difficult for them to intercept your data.

Also Read: Data Protection: What are the Options?

2. Account Monitoring Software

Knowing when your accounts have been compromised is key to minimizing the damage done. After all, the more time spent not changing your passwords and/or notifying IT is time the cybercriminal has to steal data.

Certain browsers and third-party services offer account monitoring services that notifies users of an account breach and suspicious behavior. Everyone should take advantage of these services for, at minimum, their most important accounts.

3. Two-Factor Authentication

Passwords are not enough to protect one’s account anymore. Cybercriminals everywhere have developed software that allows them to crack a variety of passwords quickly. This is why cybersecurity experts created two-factor authentication.

Two-factor authentication verifies the user attempting to login by sending a code through either email or text. Typing in the correct code allows the user to access the account.

Most accounts of importance come with two-factor authentication nowadays, but there are third-party two-factor authentication apps.

4. Strong Passwords

Don’t misconstrue the above wall of text: passwords are still important. Protecting your accounts requires everything about your accounts to be 100% secure, and by looking at certain studies, many people don’t take passwords that seriously.

Using strong passwords for every account you have will make it much harder for a hacker to gain access to your accounts. And using a unique password for each account will make sure a hacker won’t have access to multiple accounts based on one stolen password.

5. Anti-Virus & Anti-Malware Software

It’s not enough to be reactive—you need to be proactive. And when it comes to preparing for cyberattacks, both anti-virus and anti-malware software are necessary.

Antivirus software scans your computer for any major red flags on your system. Trojans, viruses, worms: all the most major forms of malicious software. Anti-malware software scans for lesser-known malware (adware, spyware, etc.).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.