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Busting common myths to keep you cyber aware for 2019

As supporters of the government’s Cyber Aware campaign, we’re pleased to help them spread the word about some common myths they’re hoping to bust in 2019.

Unfortunately, there are lots of myths about cyber security that mean businesses are not acting on measures to prepare for them. Whether it be a sole trader or a larger organisation, many businesses are not doing enough to protect themselves from cyber crime.

One simple place to start is to educate people about the threat posed by cyber criminals and how to make their online activity more secure. By doing so, businesses will champion awareness and ensure employees are doing as much as they can to protect themselves and wider business.

Debunking five common misconceptions around cyber security:

 Myth one: Public Wi-Fi is always secure for using online banking, shopping and sending sensitive information over email.

 Reality: Hackers can set-up fake WiFi hotspots, which might enable them to intercept sensitive information you are transferring online.

 Myth two: My phone doesn’t need a screen lock, as it doesn’t contain any important private data.

 Reality: Screen locks provide an extra layer of security to your device, which means if someone gets hold of your device they can’t access the data on your device without entering your password, pattern, PIN or fingerprint.

 Myth three: I don’t need to use overly complicated passwords for my email accounts – there isn’t anything important in them.

 Reality: Hackers can use your email to gain access to all your other accounts. Having strong, separate passwords for your most important accounts means that if hackers steal your password for one of your less important accounts, they can’t use it to access your most important ones.

 Myth four: I don’t need the latest software and app updates – my systems are safe enough.

 Reality:  You need to ensure that all your devices have the latest software and app updates installed. The reason this is so important is because they contain vital security patches that protect your device.

 Myth five: I don’t need to back-up data as everything is secure on my device.

 Reality: If your device is infected by a virus, malicious software (malware) or accessed by a hacker, your data may be damaged, deleted or held to ransom by ransomware, which means you won’t be able to access it. Backing up your data means you have another copy of it, which you can access.

Find out how to stay Cyber Aware by visiting: https://www.cyberaware.gov.uk/

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