It’s 2024 and the internet is pretty much everywhere.
And every day, more than 5.3 billion people use the internet for their daily lives.
From searching for a barber nearby to the best cookie recipes, the internet has become the center of our universe.
But it’s not always the safest of places in today’s world. With so many users online, it’s no surprise that cybercriminals also use it for nefarious purposes.
These people use various tactics to steal sensitive data and cause harm to systems and networks worldwide.
So, how can you protect your networks against these threats?
Well, you don’t need to look any further because in this article we will get to know what network security is and how you can protect your systems from these cyber threats.
It is the way to protect your networks and data from breaches and leaks.
And yes, this includes all the hardware and software solutions, as well as all the processes and rules on how to use the network and access points from cyber threats.
DID YOU KNOW?
More than 56 percent of Americans don’t know what steps to take in the event of a data breach. And about 64 percent of Americans have never checked to see if they were affected by a data breach.
Network security uses a multi-layer defense mechanism at the edge and in the network.
And, each security layer has its own policies and controls.
So, while people who are authorized can easily see what is in the networks, any person who is not will be blocked from doing anything in the network.
The world of the internet is a pretty crowded place and there is danger around every corner.
So, what exactly is a network security threat?
These are the attacks carried out over the network and are aimed at compromising our networks and systems.
The main goal of any network attack is to steal or gain access to private and sensitive data and use it to commit crimes or collect money.
All that aside, there are many different types of network security threats too, and each one is more damaging than the next.
It is a type of cyberattack that can trick you into revealing your sensitive or personal information.
Cybercriminals target people by mimicking a reputable company or a real person.
They send out emails with malicious attachments or links.
And if you’re naive enough to click on these links, these links then download malware to your system and can give criminals access to the PC, log all your activity and sensitive data, and send it to the criminal.
Plus, it’s not always emails that these people use for phishing attacks.
It can also be a simple form that looks legit, or you can get an SMS saying you’ve won millions or even someone calling you to say that your grandpa is in the hospital and needs money.
It is one of the most dangerous forms of network security attacks.
These attacks are pretty common these days. The cyberattacker uses the network to flood the system or server with a bunch of traffic or bots.
This means that any real users will not be able to access your site while the attack is being carried out.
It can sometimes even crash your site too.
It is pretty much a hostage or kidnapping situation.
Ransomware is a type of application or program that hackers can use to encrypt files and documents, stop you from accessing your PC, and demand that if you want access to your system again, you need to pay a sum of money to the hacker.
And sometimes these attacks can even cripple some pretty important services, like health care or emergency services.
DID YOU KNOW?
More than 60% of organizations affected by ransomware choose to pay the ransom. They think that fighting the hacker head-on would cost them more than simply paying the ransom outright.
These are the invasive software or programs that are designed to infect, damage, or get access to a computer system for malicious purposes.
There are many different kinds of malware and ransomware is just one of them.
Aside from showing you unwanted ads and installing unknown apps on your PC, malware can also target sensitive or financial information or just plainly log all your device activity without you knowing about it.
Besides, malware does not only affect Windows PCs, it also affects Macs and mobile devices too.
So, how can you protect your network security from cyberattacks?
Well, defending a network can be pretty hard, especially when we look at the scope of the internet today.
It is not just the service provider’s responsibility anymore.
We, as users, also need to know about ways to protect our devices and data from getting into the hands of the wrong people.
The following are some of the most effective ways to practice network security:
This software is kind of like an all-around solution for cyber threats.
They are also the first wall of defense against mal-softs.
It can easily protect your data by checking for any threats in real time.
For example, it can prevent you from downloading files that may contain viruses or other malicious programs. They can also improve your overall email security.
Plus, in some cases, if your system already has a virus running, an antivirus program can stop and delete the file too.
But you need to remember that viruses and malware are always evolving, so you need to keep your antivirus database updated.
Well, most of them can automatically get updated so you don’t need to worry if you forget to update them sometimes.
Hackers are always looking for ways to get into your systems and cause mayhem.
They know that older systems or apps have some security flaws or loopholes that they can use to get into your systems.
So, to prevent any of this from happening, always keep your software and apps updated to the latest versions.
For example, you know how you keep getting all those updates on your Windows laptop and your phone.
Well, it’s because they are always fixing bugs and making security patches as new issues come up.
Passwords are one of the most common things that cybercriminals use to get access to your devices, accounts, and systems.
Did you know that many people use the same password for more than one of their online accounts?
So, if a hacker gets into even one of your accounts, your other accounts might as well be gone too.
This is why you need to use complex passwords that are different for each of your accounts.
So, if you want to create a strong password, then you need to think of a sequence of characters that has both UPPERCASE and lowercase characters and also contains some symbols and special characters (like @#!).
Plus, it also needs to be at least 8 characters long. Why?
Well, this is because if your password is that long, then it will take more than 200 billion possible combinations before the hacker can force their way into your accounts.
This also means that it will take them anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour to brute force their way through.
But if you think that you’ll forget your passwords, then you can also use password managers like Bitdefender Password Manager to keep track of the passwords for all your accounts.
Aside from all this, you can also set up some strong network security protocols to protect yourself from online threats.
For example, you can change all your passwords every 6-8 months or scan any file with antivirus before installing it.
Use an antivirus that has an active internet activity monitor and protection function.
Always update your apps and software. And also, do not click on any random links or suspicious emails.
All of this can add up and create a strong wall that will protect you from hackers, malware, and any kind of threat that you can imagine.
The average cost of a data breach due to cyber attacks in 2023 was about $4.45 million. According to the 2023 cost of data breach report by IBM and the Ponemon Institute, it was an increase of 2% as compared to 2022 ($ 4.35 million).
In a world obsessed with the internet, knowing how to protect yourself from online threats can be the difference between life and death.
There are many different ways that cybercriminals will try to get access to your device, accounts, and servers.
It is important that you educate yourself about network security and its types.
By taking measures and adopting security policies, one can protect their data and well-being in this online space.
Another basic but essential method to prevent network attacks is to install firewalls and antivirus software on your network devices.
Common network security threats include malicious software (malware), phishing schemes, and Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS).
In computing, defense strategy is a concept and practice used by computer designers, users, and IT personnel to reduce computer security risks.
It keeps sensitive data safe from cyber-attacks and makes sure that the network is usable and trustworthy.