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How to Prevent Cyber Attacks in 2024? [10 Effective Steps]

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26th Dec, 2023
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    How to Prevent Cyber Attacks in 2024? [10 Effective Steps]

    Did you know that the global cost of cyber-attacks is expected to grow 15% every year and by $10 trillion (as per cybersecurityventures.com)? So, how well are the organizations prepared for this? It is known that organizations with an incident response plan reduced data breach cost by 61%. At the same time, 11% of breaches happened due to Ransomware attacks. 

    In a survey by Yahoo Finance, around 78% of respondents claim that their business's security needs modifications. However, approximately 43% of businesses don't have cyber defenses. It is possible to train your cybersecurity experts using courses on Cyber Security and fight these cyber threats effectively. In this article, we will discuss more about how to prevent a cyber-attack and how you can remain secure as a business.

    What are Cyber Attacks?

    A cyber-attack is a different set of actions performed by threat actors trying to breach another organization's information system. The individual or group of individuals who use different tactics, techniques, and procedures performs the attacks. People who do perform these threats are usually called cybercriminals, bad actors, hackers, or threat actors. They identify vulnerabilities, problems, or weaknesses in a computer system.  

    How to Prevent Cyber Attacks Effectively? [In 10 Steps] 

    To identify cyber-attack solutions, follow the below-mentioned steps:  

    Step 1: Incorporate Zero Trust Inspection 

    The idea of verifying everything and not trusting anyone has become the most important part of cybersecurity efforts. This is the reason why companies are focusing more on encryption and multi-factor authentication. However, some businesses have misunderstood zero trust as a feature or product. Instead, it is a way of using a risk-based approach to Mao the likelihood, frequency, and impact of any particular event and prioritize the highest-value threats. 

    Step 2Outsource Protection Needs to a Cybersecurity Firm 

    Cybersecurity can be quite challenging for businesses, especially for the ones that have limited budgets. Outsourcing cybersecurity to expert companies can bring skilled and dedicated IT experts to keep a check on your network, deal with various types of attacks and check online threat exposure. You must also focus on your businesses, knowing that professionals are up to date for dealing with cyber-attacks. 

    Step 3Encrypt Data When Sharing or Uploading Online 

    Another best method of preventing cyber criminals from intercepting the data during transfers is by encrypting it or using a cloud storage service that provides end-to-end encryption. Also, if you are using the software to encrypt the data before storing it online, keep the decryption key safe. Else, you will lose the data. 

    For cyber threat prevention, you must use a VPN or encrypt your network through the control panel settings to ensure that your data transfers and online interactions are safe and secure. Companies can collect and store the required information used by cybercriminals, thereby compromising the business data.

    Encrypt Data When Sharing or Uploading Online

    Step 4Teach Employees About Online Safety 

    Remote working has exposed many non-tech-savvy employees to cybersecurity threats. The unsecured Wi-Fi networks and work-from-home policies have made collaboration vulnerable. Employees can upskill and learn best practices by enrolling in KnowledgeHut’s IT Security courses, thereby preventing unauthorized access to databases.

    Companies must create a workplace culture that understands the importance of cyber security. It is essential to understand the steps on how to prevent cybercrime and be ready with the cyber incident response plan to empower employees to handle all data breaches and threats. They should be trained to keep a check on which sensitive information to send or ignore. 

    Step 5 Create Complex Passwords or Use Passphrases 

    Employees often have trouble remembering the user credentials and this is the reason they use simple credentials. But bad and insecure passwords may expose them to huge risks, making it possible for hackers to steal credentials. As a result, companies must focus on passwordless and UEBA (User and Entity Behavior Analytics) strategies for user account security. These modern techniques and technologies not just increase security but also improve user experience. 

    Step 6 Set Online Safety Guidelines 

    No matter how many secure infrastructures you apply in your office, every network still has vulnerabilities that may get targeted by hackers. Therefore, businesses need to set some online safety guidelines by upgrading their incident response plan and putting things into practice. IT staff and security companies know their responsibilities, roles, and tasks when a security breach occurs. Additionally, whether is ransomware or some other breach, a quick response could make a huge difference.  

    Step 7Protect Employee Information and Store Data Securely 

    Hackers often use social engineering to manipulate people and steal confidential information. Therefore, companies should limit the amount of information they share online about their employees and businesses. Unsafe data is an open invitation to cybercriminals to come and take advantage. Businesses should store their data securely and can have different data backups to protect sensitive data from theft, loss, destruction, and natural disaster. You can also use encryption before storing it online. Businesses often collect and store personally identifiable information and are a constant attraction to cybercriminals.

    Step 8 Establish Mutual Cybersecurity Policies with Business Partners 

    It is important to have stringent policies that adhere to your business; therefore, coordinating the online safety measures can eliminate the risk of any loopholes, thereby ensuring that your business is completely secured.  

    Access the backup files and download them to check the recovery process. Identify the vulnerabilities and resolve them to ensure your backed-up files don’t get corrupted. Keep performing other maintenance tasks like destroying unused files or taking help from IT Security courses to know better about mutual cybersecurity policies.  

    Step 9Perform a Regular Audit of Cyber Protection Procedures 

    Although automation is not the solution to every cyber security problem, AI and Machine Learning-powered tools make it easier to set security monitoring. Some businesses also believe that cloud security automation is one of the cost-effective and time-consuming ways to secure your distributed networks.  

    Also, using automation in cloud investing helps reduce the amount of time, resources, and money that is required to investigate the root cause, scope, and impact of the incident. Additionally, with the amount of data that is stored in the cloud today, companies need the ability to automatically capture and process data at the cloud's speed and scale. 

    Security teams should not have to worry about working with various cloud teams and access requirements.  

    Step 10Install Top Security Antivirus Software and Endpoint Protection 

    It costs a lot more to lose data than to protect it by investing in high-quality cyber security software. Antivirus software will create a firewall to protect your network from viruses and will restrict the forced attempt to access your system. They will also access your devices and disks to prevent malicious attacks from breaching your business. To know better, you can opt for certified Ethical Hacker training and help prevent your business from getting hacked.   

    Tips to Protect Cyber Attack

    1. Make a Backup of your Data 

    Always ensure that you must have a backup of your work and confidential files. If the attack happens, you should not fall into data loss. Data loss not just affects a business financially but also affects the reputation of the business.  

    2. keep track of Who Access your System 

    Giving access to any random person of your personal devices may put you in unprecedented situations.  So, make sure who checks your device in your absence. Put system locks and give credentials only to the respective person.  

    3. Wi-Fi Protection 

    Keep your data secure by installing a dedicated Wi-Fi at the workplace. Wi-Fi, compared to LAN, is less secure and should be encrypted properly.   

    4. Personal Accounts for Employees 

    Give dedicated personal accounts to every employee to strengthen privacy and confidentiality.  

    5. Separate Username and Passwords 

    Don’t use similar usernames and passwords for all your accounts. Keep different passwords and keep on changing them over time. Keeping similar passwords will make your business more vulnerable to lose, and if any malicious activity happens, you may end up losing everything at once.  

    6. Create Manual Cybersecurity Policies 

    While there will be policies for protecting devices and systems, stringent rules are also required to keep alert with the attack.  

    7. Set Online Safety Guidelines 

    Every business needs a security policy that outlines its guidelines for protecting the company, accessing the internet, and shielding employees from exploitation. For this, companies must set up a secure system for making transactions and protecting the customer's identity and tackling financial losses.  

    Additionally, threats come not only from cybercriminals but also from business partners, former or current employees, poor internal cybersecurity measures, and more. 

    Types of Cyber Attacks

    There are various different types of attacks that happen, so if you want to know about different types of attacks and their cyber-attacks preventions steps, let us look below:

    Types of Cyber Attacks

    Let us discuss some of the different types of cybercriminals: 

    1. Password Attack

    Password attack is a form of attack when the hacker hacks your password with password-cracking tools like Cain, Abel, Aircrack, Hashcat, etc. Let us see what you can do for the prevention of cyber-attacks: 

    • Don’t use the same password for different websites or accounts. 
    • Use strong alphanumeric passwords or special characters. 
    • Don’t put any password hints open. 
    • Use the password till the limit.  

    2. Malware Attack

    Malware is one of the most common types of cyberattacks, which refer to malicious software viruses, including spyware, ransomware, adware, Trojans, and more. 

    Malware breaches a network through vulnerabilities; when the user clicks on the dangerous link, it downloads the attachment, and the attack happens. Let us see how to stop a cyber-attack or prevent a malware attack: 

    • Use antivirus software to protect your computer against malware. 
    • Use firewalls to filter the traffic that may enter your device. 
    • Stay alert and avoid clicking on a suspicious link. 
    • Update your operating system. 

    3. Phishing Attack

    Phishing is one of the most prominent types of cyberattacks, where the attacker tries to be a trusted contact and sends the victim a fake email. 

    Not aware of this attack, the victim accidentally opens the mail and clicks on the infected link or the attachment. This way, the attacker gets all access to confidential information.  

    Some of the ways how to avoid cyber-attacks or minimize the phishing attack are: 

    • Make use of anti-phishing tools 
    • Scrutinize the emails. 
    • Keep updating the passwords. 

    4. SQL Injection Attack

    A SQL injection attack occurs on data-driven websites when the hackers manipulate the standard query. It is carried out by putting the malicious code into the vulnerable search box of the website. This way, the attacker will be able to view, edit and delete the tables in the database. Let us see how to protect from cyber-attacks and keep your business secure: 

    Use the intrusion detection system to detect unauthorized access to the network. 

    5. Man-in-the-Middle Attack 

    The MITM, also called an eavesdropping attack, comes in two-party communication. This means that the attacker hacks the communication between the client and host. This way, hackers can steal and manipulate the client’s data. 

    MIMT can be prevented by the following mentioned tips, let us understand some of the ways to prevent a cyber-attack:  

    • Don’t use public Wi-Fi networks. 
    • Be mindful of the security websites you are using. 
    • Use encryption on your devices. 

    6. DNS Tunneling

    DNS tunneling is a type of cyber-attack that attack the data of other programs or protocol the DNS queries and responses. This attack includes payloads and is more like a phonebook for the Internet. To stay protected from DNS tunneling:  

    Use the protocol object and block the DNS tunnel protocol. 

    7. Denial-of-Service Attack  

    Denial-of-Service Attack is one of the most significant threats to companies. In this, the hackers target the network or servers and flood them with huge traffic to reduce their bandwidth and exhaust their resources. 

    When the attack happens, catering to the income requests becomes difficult for the servers, which may affect the website speed, or it may shut a down. For protection against cyber-attacks, you must:  

    • Do a traffic analysis to identify the inappropriate traffic. 
    • Check the warning signs like intermittent website shutdown, network slowdown, etc. 
    • Create an incident response plan and have a checklist. 
    • Outsource DDoS prevention to cloud-based service providers.  

    8. Zero-Day Exploit

    A Zero Day Exploit happens when the network becomes vulnerable and there’s no solution to prevent the vulnerability. In this, the vendor sends the notification so that the user becomes aware. Depending upon the type of vulnerability, the time taken to fix the attack may vary. Meanwhile, the hacker targets the affected vulnerability and ensures that they exploit the hack before the solution is implemented. To defend against cyber-attack, you should be: 

    • Following an incident response plan to help you deal with cyber-attack. 
    • Following a well-communicated patch management process 

    9. Cryptojacking 

    The term cryptojacking is related to cryptocurrency; it occurs when the attacker hacks someone else’s device to mine the cryptocurrency. The access is gained by affecting the website or by manipulating the victim to click on the infected link. Sometimes, the attacker also uses online ads with JavaScript code to attack. 

    For cryptojacking, let us understand how to prevent a cyber-attack on businesses 

    • Keep your software updated and have a regular check on security apps. 
    • Give employees a crypotojacking awareness training. 
    • Install ad blocker. 

    10. Social Engineering

    Social engineering attack involve human activities, like manipulating people for breaking the normal security procedures and practices to get unauthorized access to the network, system or for any financial gain. Hackers use social engineering attack to hide their true objectives and motives showing themselves as fake trusted sources. Thereby, influencing people and manipulating users to release sensitive information. 

    Most Noticeable Cyber Attacks in Recent History

    Let us look at some of the cyber-attack examples that have impacted globally: 

    1. Kaseya Ransomware Attack

    Kaseya (a US-based provider of remote management software, has experienced a supply chain attack. The whole scenario was made public on July 2, 2021, and was reported to be highly sophisticated.  

    There was a credentials leak happen, a business logic flaw, a fake software update, and more. The attack was carried out by a Russian-based REvil cybercriminal group. Sometime after the attack, the reports claim that around 800-1500 SMBs were infected.  

    2. SolarWinds Supply Chain Attack

    This was a huge chain attack detected in December 2020 and was named after the victim, SolarWinds. The attack compromised the update meant for SolarWinds’s software platform, Orion.  

    This was one of the most serious attacks on the United States because it had breached the US military and many of Us based federal agencies. 

    3. Amazon DDoS Attack

    Amazon Web Service, AWS, was the target of a large-scale DDoS attack. The company experienced a 2.3 Tbps DDoS attack, which had a packet forwarding rate of 293.1 Mpps. 

    4. Twitter Celebrities Attack

    Twitter was breached by a group of three attackers who used social engineering attacks to steal the credentials and get access to the company’s internal management system. In this, dozens of popular accounts were hacked, including Jeff Bezos, Barack Obama, and Elon Musk. 

    Conclusion

    Despite the prevalence of Cyber-attacks, a cyber-attack is preventable. However, the key to protection is using end-to-end cyber security architecture that has multi-layers and can be used on all networks. In addition, you must checklist these key points: 

    1. Choose a prevention detection plan. 
    2. Keep security upgrades updated. 
    3. Check all the loopholes. 
    4. Implement advanced technologies. 
    5. Keep threat intelligence up to date. 

    KnowledgeHut gets you a CyberSAFE Certification course to further enhance and equip your cybersecurity knowledge and prevent security risks. 

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    1What Is the Difference Between a Cyberattack and a Cyber Crime?

    Cybersecurity is the practice of hacking government or corporate computers, servers, or networks from malicious attacks, thereby protecting all data from unauthorized access. 

    On the other hand, cybercrime is all about exploiting human or security weaknesses in the system to steal money, passwords, and other important data. 

    2What is the best defense against a cyber-attack?

    Protecting your network through the firewall is one of the best methods to protect yourself from cybercrime. A firewall can block all malicious activities and any brute attacks that may damage your network.  

    3What do you do in case of a cyber-attack?

    To know how cyber attacks can be reduced:  

    • Confirm the type of breach and identify which information is compromised 
    • Find the type of data that is affected 
    • Accept the expert's offers 
    • Update your credentials and passwords 
    • Install firewalls 
    4What is the biggest threat to cyber security?

    Businesses that get affected by the threats may end up losing billions. Those threats may include phishing, ransomware, malware attack, and more. 

    5What is the most recent cyber attack?

    Some of the most recent ones are: 

    • Cisco suffered a cyberattack by UNC2447, Yanluowang, and Lapsus$ in late May 2021.  
    • Samsung Data Breach occurred in Late July and was discovered in early August.
    Profile

    Khushboo Sharma

    Author

    Khushboo Sharma is a Professional content writer with over 7 years of experience in the field. Serving several individuals, startups, small-scale businesses and large organizations across the world she has expertise in writing a variety of content in different niches

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