What is Cybersecurity? Plus, some tips for personal protection!

With the scale of the cyber threat set to continue to rise, the International Data Corporation predicts that worldwide spending on cybersecurity solutions will reach a massive $133.7 billion by 2022. Governments across the globe have responded to the rising cyber threat with guidance and cybersecurity tips to help organizations implement effective practices.

But what exactly is Cybersecurity?

Cybersecurity is the protection of internet-connected systems such as hardware, software, and data from threats. The practice is used by individuals and enterprises to protect against unauthorized access to data centers and other computerized systems. A successful cybersecurity approach has multiple layers of protection spread across the computers, networks, programs, or data that one intends to keep safe.

Despite this pretty generic definition, the Covid-19 pandemic Cybersecurity breaches from sources that are increasingly common in the workplace, like mobile and IoT devices are just omnipresent. Furthermore, COVID-19 has made remote workforces booming, making inroads for cyber attackers. In a time of online studying or working, unwillingly many households fall victims to a security breach. Thus, let us look at the different categories of Cybersecurity irregularities:

  • Network security is the practice of securing a computer network from intruders, whether targeted attackers or malware.
  • Application security focuses on keeping software and devices free of threats. A compromised application could provide access to the data it is designed to protect. 
  • Information security protects the integrity and privacy of data, both in storage and in transit.
  • Operational security includes the processes and decisions for handling and protecting data assets. 
  • Disaster recovery and business continuity Disaster recovery policies dictate how the organization restores its operations and information to return to the same operating capacity as before of an event of a breach of security. 
  • End-user education Anyone can accidentally introduce a virus to an otherwise secure system by failing to follow good security practices. 

Challenges in the Cybersecurity fortification

One of the most problematic elements of cybersecurity is the evolving nature of security risks. As new technologies emerge, and as technology is used in new or different ways, new attack avenues are developed. Keeping up with these frequent changes and advances in attacks, as well as updating practices to protect against them, can be challenging. This can be difficult for multimillion cooperations. let alone smaller organizations without the staff or in-house resources.

In a business, cybersecurity programs should also address end-user education. As employees may accidentally bring viruses into the workplace on their laptops or mobile devices. Regular security awareness training will help employees do their part in keeping their company safe from cyber threats. Moreover, another challenge to cybersecurity includes a shortage of qualified cybersecurity personnel. As the amount of data collected and used by businesses grows, the need for cybersecurity staff to analyze, manage and respond to incidents also increases. Nevertheless, the number of cybersecurity professionals available is just not enough.  

But what are the simple steps you may follow as an end-user?

 Cybersecurity tips 

  • Update your software and operating system, this translates to receiving the benefit of the latest security bug fix.
  • Use anti-virus software, it is essential to implement anti-virus software, however, be mindful of regularly updating it, too, for the best level of protection.
  • Use strong passwords, ensure your passwords are not easily guessable and an easy way through for a cybersecurity thief
  • Do not open email attachments from unknown senders, this golden rule will rescue you from content infected with malware.
  • Do not click on links in emails from unknown senders or unfamiliar websites
  • Avoid using insecure Wi-Fi networks in public places, insecure networks leave you vulnerable to man-in-the-middle attacks.

Implementing effective cybersecurity tips & measures is particularly challenging today because, simply, there are more devices than people, and attackers are becoming more innovative. Luckily, by assessing your business’s cybersecurity risk, making company-wide changes, and improving YOUR security behavior, it’s possible to protect any business from most data breaches.

Reference list

Cisco (2019). What Is Cybersecurity? [online] Cisco. Available at: https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/products/security/what-is-cybersecurity.html.

Kaspersky (2019). What is Cyber Security? [online] Kaspersky.com. Available at: https://www.kaspersky.com/resource-center/definitions/what-is-cyber-security.