[German]November 30, is Computer Security Day, a day that has been dedicated to secure IT worldwide since 1988. The initiative for Computer Security Day goes back to the US Association for Computer Security Day. The aim of this day of action: to give the topic of computer and information security a firm place in the public consciousness and to sensitize individuals to this complex of topics.
This day is actually sorely needed, because in the meantime one must assume the status of "365 computer unsecurity days". Security provider Check Point Software Technologies Ltd takes a similar view. Because since the introduction of Computer Security Day in 1988, the extent of the threats has increased every year and in the last 12 months there have been more incidents than ever before. New and sophisticated malware, more devices, more computing power and professional criminal gangs mean that anyone with a computer, smartphone or IoT device needs to think about IT security on a regular basis – but many still don't.
Five tips for better security
But now that many people are working remotely from home, every employee has a certain amount of responsibility when it comes to IT security at home and at work. For this reason, the following tips have been compiled to provide guidance and assistance in protecting both personal devices and IT systems:
- Passwords are important: Passwords should be checked and strengthened regularly. However, experts argue about the length and composition, as well as the frequency of renewal. It is important for users to be careful with their passwords, not to store them unsecured in Excel spreadsheets or leave them written down for anyone to see, or stick them on the back of the keyboard. "1234" or "password" are also not secure passwords.
- Protect against phishing: Users should be careful before clicking on links that look suspicious in any way, often associated with the sender. They should also only download content from reliable sources, as phishing, a popular form of social engineering, has become the main avenue of attack. Therefore, if users receive an email with an unusual request or a strange sender or subject, they should immediately start doubting.
- Choose IT devices carefully: In connection with telecommuting: In connection with teleworking (remote working), this point has become extremely important. The risk of a large-scale attack increases when employees use their private end devices, such as computers or cell phones, for work purposes. Security software should be installed on all devices and the connection to the company network should be protected.
- Keep software fresh: Hackers often find entry points in applications, operating systems and security solutions, as they generally monitor and exploit the appearance of vulnerabilities. One of the best protective measures is to always use the latest version of any software – simple, but effective.
- Use multi-factor authentication: Many users are already familiar with multi-factor authentication from their online banking accounts when the TAN (one-time password) is requested via the cell phone, for example. In many cases, this login method is now being introduced for applications and accounts at online retailers to increase IT security. In this way, they have made it almost impossible for cyber criminals to gain access to the system despite knowing the password.
This advice can already help toward protecting your own devices and business against hacker attacks and malware. This should be supplemented by a comprehensive IT security architecture that consolidates and centrally controls various security solutions against different types of attack. This covers all areas of IT security and can even intercept the dreaded zero-day attacks. The training of all employees, up to management level, and the training of specialists via special training programs and learning platforms ultimately rounds off the strategy.
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