It would not be wrong to say that this is an internet-intensive era. Meaning, most of your activities are done online – whether they’re concerned with large-scale industrial automation or with day-to-day social media surfing. People spend a better part of their day staring at a screen, and why shouldn’t they, when the internet has brought an unbelievable convenience into their lives. This revolutionary technology has closed the gap between the continents, made information readily accessible and transformed the whole game for businesses. However, this very innovation has had some side effects too, ever since its inception. These vulnerabilities owe their existence to the cybercriminals, who come together to create the dark side of the internet.
What is the Dark Side of the Internet?
As we’ve already established, the internet has its shady corners, where the attackers lurk in search of prey, who in this instance are gullible and unaware online users. Everything you do on the web has a 50-50 chance of being targeted by malicious entities. That is why you need to recognize the full picture (see the web in both its good and bad forms) and protect yourself against all sorts of internet attacks. However, before you can move on to the safeguarding measures, you need to understand what you’re up against. Following are some of the most recognizable and the most recent waves of cybercrime:
Formjacking – In this lucrative attack, crafty criminals release a malicious code onto popular retailer sites, which then scans and steals the shoppers’ credit card information and reports back. This critical data is used as ransom against both small and large business enterprises. More than 48,000 commercial [RA1] sites face such a threat every month.
Social Media Warfare – This includes malicious domains posing as legitimate sites and pushing clickbait ads on social media to attract users. It might be shocking for you to know that Twitter had to remove more than 10,000 bots [RA2] posting spiteful messages, one time.
IoT Breaches – Smart devices abound in any modern home. Attackers infect these interconnected devices (cameras and routers up to 90% of the time[RA3] ), steal credentials, intercept protocols, destroy data and compromise the overall network integrity. Triton is a popular IoT threat group.
Apart from these, there are hardware chip vulnerabilities, cryptocurrency jacking, phishing, hacking, ransomware, viruses, and spyware that jeopardize internet safety, among other cyber threats.
How to Ensure Internet Security in 2020?
There is no doubt about the fact that with the passing time, internet-related attacks have accelerated to an alarming extent. The Juniper Research has calculated a total loss of $2 trillion on account of cybercrime in 2019. Facebook saw one of the worst data breaches with 50 million accounts hacked! Whereas, Symantec recorded the presence of malware in 1 out of every 302 public organization emails. So on and so forth. Internet security cannot be stressed enough, and these are the steps you can take to ensure some level of safety in 2020:
Install Protection Software – In order to thwart attacks, you need to reinforce your defenses. This is where those anti-virus, anti-malware, anti-spyware and some such software programs come in. Get your hands on the latest varieties that regularly scan your computer and browser, and automatically deal with the hidden threats. You can find the best protection software online, free of cost or requiring a minimal fee. Interestingly, some internet service providers also offer internet security suite as a part of their internet plans. Click here to find such a provider, who delivers a 360-degree web security solution to your doorstep.
Block Third-Party Cookies – Cookies play an important role in making your web browsing experience better. However, certain malicious sites use this cookie boat to send harmful code or virus to your browser, and consequently, to your devices. To beat it, you need to update your browser regularly and enable the ‘block third-party cookies’ option to stay protected.
Password Protect Everything – Think of a password like the key that opens the lock to your most confidential information. Cybercriminals are always on the lookout for rusty keys to hack and access your private data. So, the recommended step here is to use unique passwords (that are not your mother’s middle name), choose the two-factor identification protocol to reinforce passwords with an OTO pin, and don’t leave your logins open on unsecured devices.
So, by implementing the aforementioned steps, you can stay safe online this year.