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E-Safety Top Tip – Safer Internet Day 2022

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Safer Internet Day 2022 is just around the corner, with Tuesday 8th February 2022 marking the 19th annual celebration of the event. Organizations, schools, governments, community groups, and business leaders use this opportunity to come together and highlight the importance of online safety.

This year, with more employees working from home during the Covid-19 pandemic, security awareness is more critical than ever before, with users acting as the first line of defense against cyber attackers.

However, it’s not just employees that need to be aware. Anyone who uses the internet to shop online, bank, or communicate with friends and family needs to know how to spot threats, whether they’re a professional, child, teenager, or senior.

This article will look at how Safer Internet day can help employees, children, and seniors protect their data from cyber criminals and stay safe online throughout 2022.

Why is Safer Internet Day 2022 and What Tools are Available to Keep You Safe?

Safer Internet Day is an annual event that provides young people, parents, carers, teachers, educators, employees, and policymakers with an opportunity to raise awareness around cyber security challenges, from protecting your digital identity to avoiding cyber bullying on social media.

The event provides an ideal opportunity for organizations, employees, parents, and children to brush up on the latest security threats and learn new ways to protect their data from cyber criminals and fraudsters.

If you want to learn more about Safer Internet Day 2022, you can click on the events FacebookTwitterLinkedIn, and TikTok profiles and keep an eye out for the #SaferInternetDay and #SID2022 hashtags.

Using Security Awareness Training this Safer Internet Day

Safer Internet Day presents an ideal opportunity for organizations, parents, children, and seniors to brush up on their security awareness, the latest cyber threats, and what actions they can take to protect themselves.

Some of the top threats you need to be aware of in 2022 include:

  • Social engineering – Where an attacker tries to manipulate you into giving up your personal data via email, phone, or an SMS message, so they can use it to commit further crimes.
  • Phishing – A scam where an individual will use an email to lure you into clicking on a URL to a fake website or downloading a malware attachment.
  • Business Email Compromise (BEC) – A fraudster will spoof an email account of a trusted contact to try and trick you into handing over personal information.
  • Spear Phishing – An attack where a criminal collects personal data about a specific individual and then sends a highly-targeted email trying to trick the victim into handing over information.
  • Ransomware – If a ransomware attachment infects your computer or mobile device (usually via a phishing email or infected USB drive), it will lock the device until you pay a ransom

7 Security Awareness Tips that Can Help You Protect Your Data in 2022

While consumers are exposed to many online threats, preventing cyber attacks doesn’t have to be complicated. Below we’re going to look at some simple ways that you can help protect your data from cyber criminals in 2022:

1.   Don’t respond to unsolicited requests from unknown senders

Never respond to emails or SMS messages with unsolicited requests to update your password, confirm your credit card details, visit a website, or download an attachment, particularly if they’re from an unknown sender, as it’s likely a scam.

2.   Carefully Review All Emails for Red Flags

Whenever you receive an email, carefully review the sender’s email address, link URLs, and grammar to see if anything out of the ordinary could indicate the message was from a scammer.

3.   If in Doubt Double-Check

If you receive an email or SMS message from a trusted brand or service provider that urges you to take urgent action to update your account information or make a payment, it could signify a phishing attempt. If this happens, double-check the company’s email address on their official website to ensure it’s legitimate. If still in doubt, contact them directly to confirm if the communication was honest or not.

4.   Don’t Connect Unfamiliar USB Devices to Your Computer

If you spot a USB device in a public library, school, or office, don’t ever connect it to your device, as this can infect it with malware. Many attackers will often leave compromised devices to spread malware and ransomware threats.

5.   Trusted Providers Won’t Ask for Private Information

Remember that trusted entities like the government, police, tax, or health officials will never leave a voicemail asking you to call back and share private information. Anyone that does is a scammer.

6.   Watch Out for Unusual Chat Messages

Keep an eye out for unusual messages in messenger applications or social media accounts. If you see a suspicious message from someone you know with a link, find another way to tell them that a hacker might have compromised their account.

7.   Look for HTTPS Logo On Websites

When visiting a site, look out for the HTTPS logo to indicate that the site has a security certificate. This detail is a positive sign that the site is legitimate rather than a fake credential harvesting website.

5 Questions that Can Help Keep Kids and Teens Safe from Online Hackers

If you have children who like to browse online, you can help to educate them simply by taking the time to talk about internet safety and encouraging them to ask these five questions when they’re online:

1.   Why Did I Receive This Email?

Read your emails carefully, and pay attention to who the email came from, what the email asks you to do, and why. If the sender asks you to click a link, watch a video, or share your private Instagram account, ignore them.

2.   What is this Direct Message Asking Me to Do?

If you receive a glamorous direct message saying you’ve won a prize and all you need to do to claim it is to download an attachment, think carefully before acting. Consider what the individual is asking you to do and if they’re asking you to hand over personal information or click on a dangerous link or attachment.

3.   When Should I Share My Personal Information?

Never share your personal information online, and make sure your privacy settings are enabled and your location is hidden. The more information you have available, the easier it is for a hacker to learn about you and use that information to impersonate you online.

4.   How Should I Respond to Meet-Up and Friend Requests?

Never meet up with anyone who contacts you online. Many criminals will pretend to be someone they’re not to trick you into meeting up with them. You can avoid this by refusing to accept friend requests from people you don’t know in real life.

5.   Who Gets to See My Photos and Videos?

Don’t send videos or photos to people you don’t know. Always be cautious when sending photos or videos of yourself to people you know, as some people aren’t above using your photos or videos to bully, embarrass and shame you.

Use our free Cyber Security Hub Parents Kit and Students Kit to find more cyber security resources to help protect you and your kids.

5 Security Tips for Seniors

Many seniors find emerging cyber threats daunting, so if you have parents or other seniors you know that like to browse online, you can support them by sharing these simple tips they can use to ensure they stay safe:

1.   Ignore any emails, texts, or voicemails asking you to share personal information

Cyber criminals often imitate government officials or public bodies like the health department to manipulate you into giving them details like your address, phone number, health insurance details, or credit card information. Remember that a reputable body will never request private information by email, text, or phone!

2.   Don’t be tricked by requests for money

Friends, family members, and charities should never contact you with an urgent request for help. Assume anyone who requests money is a fraudster and end all communications with them.

3.   Create strong passwords and never write them down

While it’s tempting to use the same written password for all your online accounts, if a criminal learns your password, they’ll be able to access all of your accounts. Create strong passwords for your email, smartphone, tablet, and online accounts with a mixture of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols to protect your data.

4.   Keep your devices updated with OS and application updates

Always install software and application updates on your devices, so there are no vulnerabilities for an attacker to exploit. Turn on automatic updates so you can automatically install updates when they’re released and ensure you’re using the latest software, operating system, and application versions.

5.   Read and listen very carefully

Hackers often try to catch people off guard with scams during busy periods like the holidays or during stressful events like the pandemic because they know you might not read the email or text message carefully. Try to slow down, read every message carefully and ignore any communication that requests your personal information.

Recap

Safer Internet Day 2022 is an excellent opportunity for you and your family to enhance security awareness and protect your details from unscrupulous fraudsters. Reading up on the latest threats and cyber security guidance can drastically reduce the chance of being tricked into giving up information and ensure that you have a hiccup-free year.

Want to find out more about how you can protect your family from scammers? Click here to download our parents’ phishing kit.

 

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