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Cyber Crime Protection Tips From The Experts

A recent global cyber attack, the WannaCry ransomware attack that started on the 12th of May 2017, has sent shock waves across the globe, even Namibia was not exempt from the attack. With many of the victims of this attack being businesses, 99FM’s MYD Smart spoke to Yolinda van der Linde of iWits, to find out what businesses need to know regarding cyber attacks.

iWits is a Digital Agency, that help businesses grown online. Yolinda explains that “there is a ‘new’ ransomware that hit Namibia a couple of days ago and it is taking our country, and the world, by storm. Ransomware is a type of malware or malicious software that if infected blocks access to the users data and asks for a ‘ransom’ in order to obtain the data. Users are not guaranteed to gain access to their data by paying the ransom; however in many cases users are rather desperate.” Explains Yolinda

Recent reports show cyber crime being on the rise. Yolinda notes, “Almost each year a new form of ransomware hits the internet, in the past we had to deal with CryptoLocker which was one of the most well-known ransomwares. This year we are dealing with WannaCry. According to Telegraph UK, by Friday 16 May more than 200,000 organisations were already hit in 150 different countries. WannaCry ransomware appears to have used a flaw in Microsoft’s software, to spread rapidly across networks locking away files.”

“It seems like WannaCry is spreading by leveraging social engines or spam emails as a primary attack vector, tricking users into downloading and executing a malicious attachment.” explains Yolinda.

When asked what businesses need to be looking at to protect themselves against such attacks, Yolinda notes “While there is no one way to protect yourself against such attacks, or any other attacks online, but iWits believes that there are a couple (twenty to be exact,)things that each online user can do to increase their overall online security but this is not a sure fire way but are rather useful online habits to adapt.”

iWits has compiled a list of rules to live by in order to protect yourself against cybercrime. This is a guide for businesses and individuals alike, as to what online users can do to increase their overall security.

Here are three of the iWits recommendations against cyber crime. For the full article, 20 Commandments You Should Memorise, by iWits, click here

  1. Stop Recycling

A statement like this is most definitely hated by all Nature Conservatives and Hackers alike… Nature Conservatives hate the statement for obvious reasons, while Hackers hate the statement because it means that you are making their jobs (or hobbies) a lot more difficult.

When one password is used on multiple accounts and devices it is referred to as password recycling. Password recycling is a common occurrence due the vast number of online accounts individual users own – and in all fairness it is a lot easier to remember one password than 10.

  1. Update, Update and Update Some More

A software update is NOT a suggestion and should not be taken lightly. There are hundreds (if not thousands) of online users who neglect to update the software on the devices and computers they use, yet when the devices are infected they are the first to wonder why. If you take a couple of minutes to scan through the updates required you will soon notice that 80% of the time those updates are security related.

Updates on software is generally released either to fix a bug / error that occurred during development or to increase the overall security of the software. By thinking software updates are mere suggestions you are not only putting your own personal information at risk, but risking all of the devices you connect to as well.

  1. Know Your Rights

A recent iWits online awareness campaign revealed that 83% of Namibian online users do not read Terms and Conditions before accepting them. It is not a problem that is only faced in Namibia, but on a global scale. Sadly it just shows how little online users care about their online rights. As a user it is your sole responsibility to understand the terms under which you use a platform, service or device.

For the full article, 20 Commandments You Should Memorise, by iWits, click here

Get in touch with iWits through their website, by clicking here