Did you know?
It’s not just Canadian businesses that have seen an increase in cyberattacks since the start of the pandemic. Cyber criminals have increasingly been exploiting individuals working from home, taking advantage of gaps in home computer security and targeting people with phishing emails.
“While businesses are probably more equipped to handle cyberattacks, the average person is on their own when it comes to securing their personal computers,” says Vishal Kundi, CEO and co-founder of Boxx Insurance, a Toronto-based firm that specializes in cybersecurity and insurance.
In addition, many people aren’t aware they can be a victim of a personal cyberattack.
According to a report by software security firm Norton, 44% of individuals surveyed thought they weren’t “worthwhile targets” for hackers.
Cybersecurity giant Kaspersky reported that mobile device attacks have been increasing too, with malware disguised in apps and social media.
“With more people continuing to work from home and more connected devices than ever before, anyone can be a target of data and identity theft, ransomware or personal cyberattacks,” Kundi adds.
Kundi offers the following advice to people who may not be aware they are at risk when working from home…
4 Critical Questions About Your Home Security
Is your home WiFi secure enough?
“Working from home without an I.T. team to secure all Wi-Fi networks allows hackers easier access to your home network’s traffic,” says Kundi. According to the Norton report, 7 in 10 consumers wish they could make their home Wi-Fi networks more secure, yet only 27% believe their home Wi-Fi network could be compromised. Creating a dedicated WiFi for work purposes is a good way of protecting your own personal WiFi from potential cyber breaches.
Are your passwords secure?
“Insecure passwords and not making use of Multi- Factor Authentication make it easier for hackers to steal your personal information,” says Kundi. “Using simple passwords, or one password across several platforms, allows hackers to gain unauthorized access to multiple accounts in a very short period of time.”
Can you identify a phishing email?
“Phishing scams are widely recognized as the top cause of data breaches,” says Kundi. “Yet nearly three in 10 people couldn’t detect a phishing email according to the Norton report. “Hackers send seemingly legitimate, deceptive emails with malicious links and attachments. When an employee clicks on a link, a hacker is able to gain access to their personal and private networks,” Kundi explains.
Do you have sufficient personal cyber insurance?
“There’s a rule of thumb applied in medicine called Sutton’s law, named after famous bank robber Willie Sutton,” Kundi says. “Upon being caught a reporter asked Sutton why he robbed banks and he simply answered ‘because that’s where the money is’. These days, we seldom carry cash - we log into our online bank accounts and mobile apps. Sutton would no doubt be a hacker in the virtual space today, because that’s where your money is.” While you can protect yourself from cyber criminals with comprehensive security software it’s important to be adequately insured against destructive and disruptive cyberattacks, Kundi adds, which may leave you financially at a loss or worse, bankrupt.
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