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article imageQ&A: Advice for consumers to reduce cybercrime threats Special

By Tim Sandle     Nov 14, 2020 in Technology
Cybersecurity risks are ever-present but we can take steps to lower these risks if we stand back and consider where the risks derive from and take a hard look at our own activities, says security expert Myke Lyons.
As well as general threats, more of us are conducting our lives online following the impact of COVID-19. This means that businesses must be more proactive about cybersecurity and online consumer protection than ever. There are also measures that consumers can take, in order to help to mitigate the risk of falling victim to cyber-crime.
To gain an insight into cybersecurity risk management, Digital Journal caught up with Myke Lyons, the Chief Information Security Officer at the company Collibra.
Digital Journal: What are the risks of cybersecurity?
Myke Lyons: Our lives are becoming increasingly digital during COVID-19. This means facing new challenges with cybersecurity. As an example, the loss of in-person conversations of the type that take place between colleagues at the office, a process that contributes to people staying alert.
Things are becoming more fragmented. People are subject to higher levels of emotional stress. This can cause people to react in surprising ways.
DJ: Are there any other challenges?
Lyons: A new challenge is a rise in activity from bad actors and a corresponding increase in attempts to capture data, devices and networks. Common examples are phishing emails, in the form of a fraudulent call for help from what appears to be your manager asking you to urgently wire over money; or a communication from a familiar person prompting tou to click on a link.
DJ: How can we prevent these threats?
Lyons:Be smart, stay alert and recognize these attacks as soon as possible.
There are also personal measures that we can take to enhance our own online safety. As examples:
Use a password manager.
Change your passwords regularly, and the more you use a password, the more frequently you should change it.
Do not reuse passwords on different websites or across multiple accounts.
Avoid creating usernames using identifying information, such as your birthday (Fred1978 is not a good choice).
Double check the sender’s email address or phone number on any requests for action or information.
Beware of surprises. This means only click on links you were expecting to receive.
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is...
DJ: Do you have any further advice?
Lyons:Good education plus encouraging personal vigilance. Companies need to make sure they use data to take a proactive approach to security. Like utilizing machine learning together with more advanced anti-malware and anti-phishing technologies.
More about Cybersecurity, Cybercrime, Consumers, risk management
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