Note: This is a guest post written by Dan Martin
Data breaches continue to be a threat to both individuals and organizations. Hackers are becoming innovative in how they execute their attacks. Today, the most common forms of data breaches are malware and phishing.
To help you protect yourself or your organization, you have to take the necessary measures. Thus, it’s essential to cover any loophole as early as possible. The following article covers some tips you can incorporate to secure your data.
But first, it’s essential to understand what a data breach is.
What is Data Breach?
Data breaches expose protected, sensitive, and confidential information to unauthorized individuals. The files are viewed and shared without the permission of the owner. Data breaches occur because of gaps in technology and user behavior online.
Anyone can be at risk of a data breach and even put others at risk if they are not protected. A good example is Apple, which suffered a breach in September 2021. Fortunately, Apple managed to patch the exploit a few days later.
In most cases, data breaches lead to the change of a course in an organization. It weakens an organization in unexpected ways. It’s costly to revert the damages caused, and the process may take a long period.
Worse still, the business may suffer permanent damages. Also, it can damage the reputation of those whose information is involved.
Now that you have an understanding of data breaches. Here are the 6 best ways to secure your information from breaches.
- Use Proxy Server to Protect Your Data
Potential hackers access web requests and sensitive data online. A proxy server is a system that serves as an intermediary between users and the internet. It encrypts requests before sending them to the internet server.
To keep your data safe, use a proxy server to prevent cybercriminals from accessing your private network.
Different types of proxies exist today. Meaning, getting affordable proxies isn’t such a hassle. Examples of these proxies include:
- Reverse proxies hide the server’s IP address you want to send a request to. It’s a great option if you want to monitor access to a server for reasons. For instance, if you are protecting your clients from having unmonitored access to a database.
- Transparent proxies are servers that operate between the internet and computer. They redirect your responses and requests without modifying them.
- Residential proxies– These proxies use the actual IP address. They are one of the best proxy server types to use. They have a low block rate and high anonymity level.
- Datacenter proxies– These are the opposite of residential proxies. They have computer-generated IP addresses that aren’t attached to an actual device. Datacenter proxies have reliable speed giving them an advantage over other proxies.
- Distorting proxies – Distorting proxies use false IP addresses. It’s a great tool when you want to appear in a particular location.
You may want to get yourself the best proxy server; thus, it is essential to do your research first.
- Enable Multi-Factor Authentication
Multi-factor authentication is an excellent feature that bars unauthorized users from accessing sensitive data. It protects information from hackers. It’s essential to use different elements to have secure sign-ins. Examples include biometrics, emails, SMS/text messages, and security questions.
Use an extra layer of protection like email verification or time-based security codes. Multiple layers of security ensure that anyone claiming access is who they are supposed to be. For example, you can allow your employee to log in on a managed device from your corporate network.
However, if they log in from an unknown device, ask them to respond to the additional layer of security.
Even if a hacker sets one credential with MFA, they are forced to verify their identity in other ways.
- Use Tougher Security Questions
Security questions prevent imposters from infiltrating the verification system. A good security question makes it easy for legitimate users to authenticate themselves. Here are some of the tips to craft your security questions.
- Safe – hackers should have a hard time guessing it. Questions like the ‘mode of your current car ‘or which school you attended are easy to guess. However, questions like who was your favorite child hero or the second name of your 8th grader teacher are hard to guess.
- A high number of possible answers– when a question has several possible responses, it limits hackers’ ability to guess the answer right.
- Stable– the answer needs to be constant and shouldn’t change over time
- Memorable– users should remember it with ease.
- Creative– You have to be creative when curating your questions. A series of questions recur when resetting a password. Unfortunately, hackers are likely to guess the answers right.
To eliminate this vulnerability, come up with new and innovative questions.
- Create a Strong and Secure Password
Complex and unique data is the first defense against data breaches. The following are some tips for a stronger and secure password.
- Longer passwords– the minimum length of the password needs to be 15 characters. If possible, make it more.
- Incorporate mixed characters– the passwords need to be a combination of lowercase and uppercase letters, symbols, and numbers. The more complex your password is, the more challenging it is for the hackers to attack.
- Use a password manager– Don’t store your password in a document on your computer. Password managers help auto-generate and store strong passwords on your behalf. The manager saves your password in a centralized and encrypted location.
- Change the password frequently– At least every few months, get into the habit of changing the password. You can do it once or twice a month.
- Avoid using memorable sequential keyboards paths like the Qwerty, ‘1234’or ‘asdfgh.’
- Combine different unrelated words in your password – Cybercriminals have mastered the art of guessing passwords. Don’t use phrases from popular movies, television shows, or songs. You can use three or four longer words to create the password. For example, ‘6dersWjutli9p7gc.’
- Don’t reuse your password – Every application, website, or piece of software needs to have a unique, strong password or pin. If cybercriminals access one of your passwords, they might attempt to hack into your other professionals or personal accounts.
- Back-Up Your Data
A data backup solution is an excellent measure to protect your business from a ransomware attack. Once a team member accidentally clicks a malicious link, the malware is deployed all over your system, thus interfering with the data.
Protect your data by constantly implementing data backups. Use the cloud to copy the data on your server and then host it in a remote location. Thus, if your system is hacked, you can always restore the data.
- Offer Cybersecurity Training to Employees
Human beings are prone to errors. They can be tempted by click bait and trust fake identities. Unfortunately, they can easily fall victim to the sneaky tactics of cybercriminals. Thus, it’s vital to conduct cybersecurity awareness camps for your employees.
Employees need to understand how to identify threats and what to do when they identify these attacks.
Training your employees would help reduce cyberattacks caused by human errors. It’s necessary for them to protect themselves and the company against cyber attacks.
Data breaches aren’t going to stop anytime soon. Both individuals and organizations are vulnerable to these attacks. Thus, it’s essential to implement the proper measures to be immune to them.
A combination of different strategies will help you secure your data. It doesn’t matter whether it’s implementing the best proxy server, applying multi-factor authentication, or backing up your data. Do your best to protect your information from breaches.