Cyber Smart Week – Cyber Up with CERT NZ Robots roaming your screens? It must be Cyber Smart Week! This is when CERT NZ’s bubbly band of bots come out of hibernation and share important messages to help us all keep secure online. And they’re urging all New Zealanders– including, you – to Cyber Up. Cyber security threats are on the rise and anyone can be a target. It may come as a surprise, but your personal and financial information is highly valuable to attackers. So it’s worth putting some simple steps in place to defend against them. The good news is, it’s easy to do! So UP your online defences and keep attackers out by taking these four simple steps:
Upsizing your passwords is one of the best ways to protect yourself online. Long and strong passwords are much harder for attackers to crack. We recommend creating a passphrase, that’s a string of four or more words as it’s easier to remember and is stronger than a random mix of letters, numbers and symbols. It’s also important to use different passwords on each account. If an attacker gets hold of one of your passwords, they can’t get access to all of your other accounts. It also means you only have to change the password for that one account.
Upgrading to two-factor authentication (2FA) adds another layer of security to your accounts. It’s a simple extra step after you log in, like using your thumb print or entering a code from an app.
You can enable 2FA on most of your online accounts, and your devices. You’ll usually find the option to turn it on in the privacy settings
Check out CERT NZ’s guide for turning on 2FA
Uphold your privacy and keep a check on what information you’re sharing online, and who you’re sharing it with. We’re so used to sharing things online that we don’t always think about how it affects our privacy. Check that the privacy settings on your social media accounts are set to ‘Friends Only’ so only those you know can see what you’re up to. And when signing up for a new online account, just provide the information that the account requires to be functional for you. Do they really need to know your middle name and phone number? The information you share could enable attackers to impersonate you online or even try to steal your identity. Check out CERT NZ’s guide to protecting your privacy
When you’re alerted to an update for your device, don’t ignore it — install it as soon as possible. As well as adding new features, updates keep bugs and viruses out and fix security risks that attackers can use to gain access to your information. Try setting updates to take place automatically whenever a new version is available. That way, you don’t have to think about it! Check out CERT NZ’s guide for keeping apps and devices up-to-date
If you, or someone you know, experiences a cyber security incident, report it to CERT NZ. They’re here to help New Zealanders protect and recover from cyber security threats and incidents. Report an issue www.cert.govt.nz/report
Did you known that phishing is the number 1 threat to most businesses and these attacks are becoming increasingly sophisticated? Social engineering targets the human factor of a system and attempts to coerce or trick people into performing actions that could compromise themselves and your business. Using phishing simulation training is a great way to raise awareness about these type of email threats by sending mock phishing emails to your workforce to help them spot the fakes and recognize suspicious requests, just in case they manage to slip through other protective measures like security gateways. The results will highlight key risks and give you focus for future training events. Sharing the results with your staff to let them know how they're performing against their co-workers and will inspire them to become more diligent.
Why not create a competition between teams or staff and have the winners rewarded for their efforts? Incentivized training can be a great way to get your workforce engaged in cyber security training. There are many options that could include online training platforms, a cyber security workshop or a daily quiz.
Adding posters to commonly used areas and throughout the workplace puts cyber security concepts right in front of your teams noses. Making them bright and attractive helps to garner more attention. You could devise a daily email for Cyber Smart Week with a tip on how to improve cyber security, increasing the likelihood of these messages being seen by your team. You could even go as far as to change the backgrounds on company owned devices to display a cyber security message.
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