Don’t go phishing

The situation

2020 has been a remarkable year in terms of how businesses that have survived have been forced to change their method of operation compared to previous years, most especially in terms of the technology landscape. With these new methods, a new wave of threats also became evident, phishing and malware threats as well as the ability to securely connect to their office to connect to work-related resources.

In 2020, the threat landscape has increased so much so that the traditional protection that mail providers were offering clients began to show the cracks. Although there are always bigger and better solutions to fill the gaps, the fact remains that today’s cybersecurity breaches are more than providing a software or hardware security solution, they are about providing a training path to users and educating every member of an organisation on what to be aware of and how to protect themselves against these threats.

Phishing emails, as a prime example, has seen a massive surge that is almost impossible to deal with unless you know what is real or fake. Yes, there are added protection mechanisms that can be implemented, but no platform can ever provide you with 100% protection.

The recommendation

Our recommendations follow a multi-faceted approach to protecting both yourself and your network.

Mail Protection Mechanisms

Our recommendation would be to ensure that the default protection mechanisms are in place such as malware blocking, spam protection, maybe even increasing the level of spam protection and chancing the legitimate mail or two from getting sent to junk, then receiving the several spam emails in your mailbox as it only takes one second to make a mistake.

The protection of mail should be set from your mail provider to prevent mails arriving that are unwanted.

Ask a friend

Our second recommendation would be DO NOT CLICK THE LINK on any email, and if in any doubt at all, rather send the mail to your mail provider or IT professional and ask them to confirm the legitimacy of the mail. Mails from any legitimate provider will never ask you to confirm your account, especially any bank. If anything, your account or mail would stop working completely if there was an issue.

The sophistication of attacks are ever-increasing and protection mechanisms will only provide so much protection, user education is more important than any technology advancement made.

There are trained IT professionals such as Ativo ICT that can assist with these types of scenarios, we would highly recommend relying on a professionals input for assistance.

Protect yourself

The discussion around anti-virus products is a much-debated topic that differs between individuals and professionals alike. We can confidently say that you are safer with an anti-virus security product on your computer. A security product that protects your mail client, in particular, security products of this type would be paid products.

We know there are a multitude of free anti-virus products available, so the argument will be why can’t I put a free anti-virus, well, technically, you can, but you get what you pay for, and most free products don’t provide sufficient protection in comparison to your paid counterparts, and aside from that, always remember, if you don’t pay for a product, you are the product, so you are freely allowing the company to use your data and information that you sometimes don’t even know and understand.

Our recommendation would be Eset, it is a security solution that we strongly believe in and use, and that has a strong footprint worldwide with low system resource requirements.

The purpose of this write-up is to guide and help users with a more thorough understanding of how to protect themselves in a time when everything digitally connected can be compromised and hacked.

For any IT support requirements, please feel free to contact us from our Contact Us Page.

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