As the information security sector is rapidly progressing, cyber security still proves to be a constant challenge for businesses all over the world. Businesses belonging to all types of industries invest heavily in cyber security to make sure its data and information is safe from inside and outside threats. As cybercrimes are evolving with the passage of time, the techniques and methods used to protect ourselves from these cyber threats are also being improved and implemented by businesses. Making improvements in cyber security is a never ending process, no individual or business can effectively prepare for all types of cyber threats. As time darkens, cybercriminals evolve and there are new methods being used by hackers every so often. To prepare for future cyber security threats, it would be best practice to learn latest feasible methods to secure ourselves from rising cyber security risks. In this article, we will discuss some of the most compact methods that can be used to protect against cyber security threats in 2020.

Top Cyber Security Improvement Methods
Cyber security is the number one concern for every organisation globally. Companies all over the world spend a significant amount of money re-enforcing their cyber security system in order to be prepared for providing cyber security defense and offense. This New Year, it is best that we learn effective methods to protect ourselves from the rising cyber security concerns. Below are the top security steps that we can follow to safeguard ourselves from external cyber threats.

Keeping Your IoT Devices Secure
This should be our top priority to regularly check our device’s updates and install up-to-date software’s and operating systems to ensure maximum protection.
According to Statista report, currently there are over 30 billion IoT devices used by people all around the world. The number one rising issue in terms of IoT devices is that a high number of devices are not reinforced with proper security updates to patch any existing security loop holes and vulnerabilities. Not installing important softwares and security updates in IoT devices and not releasing security updates by manufacturers is a high security risk that exposes millions of users to cyber-attacks.

Using Firewalls To Protect Against DDOS Attacks
To add an extra layer of security to our IoT devices, it is recommended that we install trustworthy third party firewall applications that will monitor and alert the user in case of any suspicious or cyber-attack related activity.
Hackers can gain unauthorized access to IoT Devices like Mobile Phones, laptops and computers. The security breaches allow control of these devices hackers and cyber-crime groups can use our IoT devices for initiating a bigger cyber-attack. Hackers can turn our IoT devices into cyber weapons that will be used by hackers in launching attacks like DDOS to cause mass network corruption like bringing down a server or a website or a company’s network.
Most popular anti-virus software’s including 360 Security, Kaspersky, Avast, Avaira, and Maleware bytes etc. now provide special built-in firewalls that monitors online browsing activities and blocks any suspicious looking website or page. These firewalls also help in identifying the safety and security of online shopping marketplaces and websites. Having proper antivirus software’s and firewalls installed into the systems of your personal devices or devices present in your workplace can increase protection from known and unknown threats. Installing Ransomware protection firewalls and software can prevent such attacks. The number of Ransomware attacks is increasing rapidly hackers are gaining access to more and more devices and locking them for extortion money. According to SonicWALL the amount of ransomware related attacks are expected to rise to double in 2020.

Always Use Complex Passwords
Always secure your devices with strong combination of password that will include, uppercase, lower case, numbers and special characters.
This will make this intensively hard for hackers to guess out your password.This is an essential and basic knowledge that everyone using an IoT device must know and understand. Unfortunately there are a high amount of users that choose too much common passwords like their birthdays, car numbers or phone numbers. Cyber criminals and hackers can use password guessing methods like Brute force attacks and dictionary attacks to find out a password to our social media or IoT devices accounts.

Use Security Browser Toolbars
Now a day’s most of the latest internet browsers offer customization features and allows installation of third party extensions to the browser for a personalized experience. From extensions or plugins store, always find and install a well reputed security extension or toolbar that provides identification of the phishing websites. But always remember that these tools will only let you know that this website may contain harmful elements or phishing attacks. But you can still visit that website on your own risk if you click on “proceed anyway option” and it is highly not recommended to visit potentially dangerous. The most satisfying part is that these extension and plugins are mostly free and can really increase digital security.

Keep Yourself Educated
Staying up to date in today’s modern world is crucial. A very effective way to make sure you don’t fall victim to the rising cyber security attacks like phishing and other types of hacking attacks, it is very important that we keep our software’s and operating systems up to date. Make sure you have all the knowledge about latest hacking methods and their prevention measures and ensure security updates are installed and all the software’s are updated regularly to minimize the risk of vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit.
Moreover keeping proper track of your online activity is very crucial as when it comes to sharing private information online including emails, passwords and any financial or personal information. Similarly using Public Wifi’s can be a security risk as cyber hackers can use public wifi’s to target the connected users as public wifi are mostly unsecured with a password. Also it is best to use secure messaging applications that use end-to-end encryption security features to ensure total privacy

Checking The Website Security
Websites that do not have SSL security or Https, and therefore do not have a green lock on the left side of the bar are likely to be infected because they are unprotected. Avoid opening such websites and never download anything from these websites. Keep yourself educated.

Avoid Suspicious Popups And Use Private Browsers
Websites that promote unusual popups and ads asking for any personal or sensitive information must be avoided. Never enter any information by clicking on these ads, as they will redirect a user to a different website and ask you to download a specific application or file which could turn out to be malware or a Trojan. Moreover using a highly privacy oriented internet browser can help reduce the risk of leaking any of your private information online.

Bottom Line
Cyber security is a constant challenge for all technology users and businesses, no matter its size or which industry they belong to. There is always a risk of cyber-attack or a security risk. As we have entered into 2020, these cyber threats are only going to continue to rise in numbers and in severity. One of the best ways to protect your devices and your data is to keep learning state of the art security methods. With proper knowledge and skills, we can protect valuable data from any outsider cyber-attack.