October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month, and in typical Halloween fashion, we are posting about some of the spookiest things out there. Cyber security. Most people are more concerned with ghosts, ghouls, and goblins than they are with the dangers lurking in the dark corners of the Internet. So, let’s make a compromise. We’re going to list the 7 biggest tricks when it comes to cybersecurity, and we’ll try to make it as spooky as possible (then we’ll list the treats, don’t worry).

Watch Out for These Cyber Tricks Hackers Play:

Social Engineering: The definition of social engineering is the manipulation of people in order to get access to confidential information. This malicious practice has been used for centuries but it has gotten even more effective in the Internet Age. Examples of social engineering include sending an email disguised as your friend or a trusted source, baiting you with free goods, and catfishing you into a fake romantic relationship. Once the needed information is obtained, the social engineer can then sell it or use it to line their own pockets. Think of them as shapeshifters who change their form in order to get what they want out of you.

Phishing: While many of the items on this list are types of software, phishing is more of an attack vector. Cybercriminals most often craft an email or text message that appears convincing but once interacted with (through clicking on attachments or links) could prompt you to enter login credentials or install software that is infected with malware. Imagine someone installing a listening device into your home by packaging it in a box from a store you would normally shop with. Sounds a lot scarier now, doesn’t it?

Malware: Malware is a broad term encompassing any type of intrusive software designed to damage computer systems. It has many different subsets, but malware is the umbrella under which they all live. Malware is a lot like another M-word: monster. There are many different types of monsters, but in the end, they are all monsters.

Viruses: We all know about the viruses that can infect your body, but what about the ones that infect your computer? They are often attached to a file sent to you by a cybercriminal. These malicious chunks of code spread from device to device, damaging your software and stealing your data. Think about it this way, how much scarier would biological viruses be if they could record your thoughts and give them to someone else?

Keylogger: This specific form of spyware can be extremely dangerous. Keyloggers allow hackers to see the keystrokes made on their victim’s keyboard. This information could lead them to usernames, passwords, bank information, and other personal data. It’s like if there was someone learning all your personal secrets by reading through your texts and emails. Just the idea of it sends shivers right down your spine.

Ransomware: All malware is dangerous, but there is not a subset more directly harmful than ransomware. This code-based demon infects your computer by encrypting the data stored on the device and forces the owner to pay a ransom to get it back. These types of attacks can occur on a personal or business level. To make a spooky comparison, ransomware is like a demon possessing your friend and forcing you to give up your soul in order to get them back.

The Dark Web: The Dark Web may not be something that can infect your computer, but it is definitely something you should be scared of. The Internet we use is only the tip of the iceberg, with the Deep and Dark Web taking up the rest. This shadowy hive of villains and ne’er-do-wells is where many attacks are launched from and where a lot of the stolen data is sold. There isn’t a good enough spooky metaphor for this one because the Dark Web is terrifying enough on its own.

There they are! Seven terrifying digital ghouls that will be haunting you for weeks to come. Check out the next section for tips to stop the tricks.

Cybersecuity Awareness Month: Tricks and Treats to stop Hackers

Cybersecurity Downlow:

Here’s the Treats to Stop Hackers in Their Tracks

Here are the treats you’ll need to tackle any cyber security trick. October can be a lot less scary with these helpful tips for your business. Listed below are seven powerful tools, normally be found bundled together in one cybersecurity awareness program, that will turn your company’s digital security from zero to hero!

Continuous Dark Web Monitoring: The dark web can be a terrifying place. Cybercriminals use it as a home base for malware attacks, phishing schemes, and all sorts of other digital terror activity. It’s not recommended that you ever delve into that Marianas Trench of the Internet, but you should know if your data is being passed around down there. A dark web monitoring service will alert you if certain emails, names, passwords, usernames, and more appear in the deep web. This will give you the chance to change passwords or back-up data before an attack occurs. A service like this could save you from having your identity stolen down the line. Go to our Dark Web Scan Page to see if you or anyone in your company has had their data breached.

Simulated Phishing: Over 1/5 of all data breaches involved phishing schemes in some way (source), so there is never too much protection against it. In a phishing simulation, you and your employees will receive fake phishing emails disguised as real emails to help you learn how to identify when you are being scammed. If you fall for the phishing scam, often you are prompted to take a training course on how to avoid them in the future. But congratulating those who pass is just as important as educating those that don’t. Positive reinforcement and gamification are invaluable aspects of simulated phishing that make it that much more effective. This tool builds habits that will only benefit your company in the long run. Get more information for a free cyber security audit here!

Email Analysis Tool: Phishing attacks are one of the most prevalent scams on the Internet. Not only that but they can be very hard to catch if you are not paying attention. With an email analysis tool, however, you only have to be suspicious of an email to know if it is a phishing attempt. An email analysis tool allows employees to test whether an email has signs of phishing just by clicking a button. Once triggered, these tools tell the employee what parts of the email make it likely to be a phishing attempt and what they can look for in the future. Save IT some time and possibly yourself some grief with a tool that will put the power to uncover phishing schemes into the palm of your hand. Are your company’s emails backed up and secure? Calculate how much a failure would cost your business on our Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery calculator.

Weekly Micro Training Videos: One of the most important parts of strong cybersecurity is constant and regular training. Many training programs provide an annual training course that covers the basics, but if you let that information fall into the recesses of your mind it isn’t going to do you any good. That’s why short weekly trainings can be extremely helpful for your business. Reminding your employees every week of the dangers that lurk on the Internet and the ways with which they can combat them is extremely important. These trainings will also keep your employees informed on the newest trends of cybercrime. Cybercriminals are constantly evolving so you and your employees must remain constantly educated. These trainings tend to be 5 minutes or less and they are normally sent directly to your inbox. Five minutes for exponentially stronger cybersecurity sounds like a good deal to me!

Gamification & Employee Engagement: As you read through this blog, you may be thinking, there’s NO WAY my busy employees have time for all of this…and there’s no way you have time to nag them the entire way. That’s why a training program that puts gamification and employee engagement first is a HUGE key to a program’s success. That, and participation from upper management of course. When looking for a training program, make sure it’ll make your life easier, not harder. With positive reinforcement, gamified training, and a competitive leaderboard, you’ll do less nagging and more celebrating.

Simplified Management: Implementing a training program can seem daunting. All the time it would take you to rummage through all your employee’s data sounds IMPOSSIBLE. But if you find the RIGHT program that helps you, and doesn’t hurt you, you’ll be on your way to cybersecure in no time. Find a program that simplifies all the messy metrics into one, easy-to-understand risk score to help your management team understand where their company’s cybersecurity stands. No more data overwhelm, just one score indicating whether an employee is high, medium, or low risk and how to improve. Adding a metric to your employee evaluations has never been easier.

Security Risk Assessment: You can’t fix a leaky roof if you don’t know where the water’s coming from. You can’t repair your engine if you don’t know what broke. It’s impossible to fix a problem if you don’t know what the problem is. That is where a Security Risk Assessment comes in. This examination will tell you where the holes in your cybersecurity are and how best to plug them up. There’s no point in guessing with something as important as cybersecurity, go through an SRA to get a more confident answer.

Anything can happen at any time. That is exactly why you should always be prepared for a criminal to pounce. All these tools will keep your staff on their toes and prevent your business from falling victim to the next digital villain’s master scheme. The only thing I’m asking of you, is to have the foresight to open the toolkit and use them.

We’ve got everything that you need right here! KPInterface can provide everything mentioned above so that your company never has to worry about cybersecurity again. Contact us or at [email protected] to learn how your company get can the jump on cybercriminals with one easy-to-use program that’s automated, ongoing and easy to use!