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Four Cyber-Security Threats Your Small Business Needs to Know About

It’s more important than ever to protect yourself and your business from emerging cyberthreats. These best practices that will secure your online presence, protect sensitive information, and make your use of the internet safer.





Data breaches have become more common in recent years as the kinds of threats continue to evolve. According to a new study, the average cost of a data breach increased 2.6% from 2021 to 2022.* Hackers can now access your sensitive information more easily than ever before.


Fortunately, you can safeguard your business against data breaches. The first step is being aware of the threats that exist. Second, you must take precautions to protect your data. Third, you need to know what to do if your data is compromised.

 

In this blog post, we'll discuss a few of the newer and lesser-known threats you need to look out for.


Juice Jacking


Juice jacking is a cyberattack where a malicious actor secretly installs malware on a public charging station. This malware can then infect the devices of anyone who plugs into the charging station. Once infected, the attacker can access the victim's data. Any device connected to the infected public charging station is susceptible to juice jacking, including laptops and tablets, even your electric vehicle can be juice jacked!


Crazy, right?

 

It is best to carry a portable recharger with you. They are easily found in stores and online and not very expensive. If you must use a public charging station, take these precautions. First, only use a one-way charging cable or a USB data blocker. Then ensure that your device is in "charging" mode rather than "data transfer" mode.


Apps that contain malware


Applications, or Apps, offer entertainment and productivity. They bring our smart devices to life. Most of the apps you will find in app stores are legitimate and safe. Unfortunately, there are also many malicious apps released by cybercriminals despite valiant efforts to keep app stores safe.

 

The goal of these bad apps is that they can infect your device with malware. This malicious software can pose a devastating risk to your device, including taking your personal data, corrupting your files, or crashing the device. In the worst cases, malware even equips hackers to take control of your device remotely without your knowledge so they can continue to plague it.

 

Protect yourself from downloading malware-laden apps by doing some research before downloading any app, even if it’s from an official store like the App Store or Google Play Store. Check reviews and ratings, and only download apps from developers that are trusted.


Malicious QR codes


QR codes are becoming increasingly popular because they can make reaching a site so easy. Unfortunately, while they offer a convenient way to share information, they also present a potential security risk because they might lead you to a malicious site instead of the one you expected. That can give attackers access to your device and data.

 

To protect yourself against this type of attack, use caution when scanning QR codes. There are reputable QR code scanners that check for malicious content before opening it. You should also avoid scanning QR codes unless the source is trustworthy.


Public Wi-Fi


Public Wi-Fi is a convenient way to access the internet when you're out and about. However, it is also a convenient way for hackers to gain access to your devices. That’s why we recommend using a Virtual Private Network. A VPN encrypts your data and provides a secure connection, between your device and the intended destination to prevent others on the same network from seeing what you're doing online. Thereby preventing them from intercepting your data and stealing sensitive information.



You don't have to go it alone


An IT consultant, like us, can help you with cybersecurity, backup & disaster recovery, regulatory compliance and, much more.

 

We even offer security awareness training to improve your employees' readiness to avoid cyberthreats like these and many others. Employees can benefit from this training by learning how to identify and avoid phishing scams, protect their passwords and detect other types of cyberattacks.

 

To learn more about security awareness training, download our eBook “Security Awareness Training: Your Small Business’s Best Investment” by clicking here.

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