Cyber security is a vast subject and one which may not excite us all that much. Let’s face it, learning about different types of software and security features isn’t many people’s idea of a fun night out.
Having said that, it’s one of the few areas that we unfortunately need the most information about as cyber security has rapidly become a top priority for organisations and schools across the world. It was found that 83% of schools experienced a cyber-incident or attack with 65% of schools not training staff about cyber-security (NCSC research).
Despite the complexity we may associate cyber security with, the basics are fundamentally down to how we as individuals respond to oncoming attacks. Beyond the security software and privacy features we may include, we are ultimately there as a last line of defence.
Luckily the basics are not all that complicated. Continuing on with Cyber Security Month we’re listing the basics of how we as individuals should respond when faced with a potential attack.
Something Doesn’t Seem Right
Have you ever come across something and thought ‘Hmm, I’m not sure about this.’? We are programmed to flag unfamiliar or suspicious activity daily and computer attacks are no exception.
If an email, link, or pop up is triggering that suspicion in the back of your mind then trust your instinct and don’t proceed any further. Always question what is coming your way, not everything is always as it seems despite trying to convince you at every turn.
Take Your Time
We are fortunate enough to have all the time we need when questioning suspicious activity. No one should make you feel as though you are running out of time when faced with a prompt or demand. At the same time, you shouldn’t feel as though you need to respond quickly to anything which raises concern. Taking your time to evaluate a situation could be what ultimately protects you from an attack.
We all like to find our rhythm when working in a fast paced environment but sometimes we need to slow down and take the time to decide what not to engage with.
Contact Established Channels
Let’s face it, it’s rare for companies to reach out to us for ‘support’ when we haven’t even asked for it. If someone is asking you for confirmation of details, then that suspicion flag needs to be raised again.
No one should be asking you to divulge established usernames, passwords or bank details at any given time. Stop communication, contact the established channel you are familiar with and confirm with them whether a request is genuine or not.
We all need help and many of our peers may know something we don’t when it comes to fending off oncoming attacks. If you’re not sure about something, then confiding in someone versed in cyber security could give you the reassurance you need to fend them off.
Cyber-attacks come in many shapes and sizes but we may only be familiar with a few. As always, if something doesn’t seem right, ask for support before engaging any further, no one will be angry and it sets you up for dealing with them at a later date.
Be One Step Ahead
Support is always available but to have the confidence to know what to do individually can set you up for the future. Always being one step ahead is what keeps attackers at bay whether it’s ensuring passwords are strong or keeping devices up to date.
Cyber security is something that consistently changes as technology develops, meaning we need to keep up. Getting the right training and insight regularly ensures you are confident in your cyber security practice.
We have partnered with Mimecast to offer Cyber Security Awareness Training for Schools, helping your organisation deliver up to date training remotely to staff, track progress and identify weak areas. Bitesize, engaging training videos will be sent to staff at regular intervals, each module taking around 5 mins to complete, reminding your staff what to look out for and what the consequences could be.
We also offer Cyber Security Training for businesses through our subsidiary Edtesa.