It’s Halloween this week – a time for people to dress up in scary costumes, for kids to go ‘trick or treat’-ing, and generally just another excuse to have a party.
In the age of technology, the fear out there isn’t ghosts, witches, demons and goblins – but there are other threats in our daily lives which, like ghosts, we can’t actually see with the naked eye, but they are there all the same.
In the past, society feared what it couldn’t see and didn’t understand. Nowadays, we may not be able to physically see a computer virus – but we can sure as hell do our part to recognize it and protect our devices before it’s too late. The tech guys amongst us may be able to explain to you how they originate – for the rest of us, it’s more a matter of being savvy enough to stop these cyber demons in their tracks.
So what kind of evil spirits are we looking out for?
👿 Virus – This sneaky computer program replicates itself by modifying other computer programs and inserting its own code.
👿 Ransomware – A type of malware that encrypts files so that databases and applications can’t be accessed, and then holds a victim’s information ‘for ransom’. Ransomware is a growing threat, inflicting damage and expenses for businesses and governmental organizations.
👿 Phishing scams – Scammers use email or SMS to trick you into giving them your personal information, by disguising themselves to look like they’re from a company you know or trust. They may try to steal your passwords, account numbers or Social Security numbers. If they gain access to your personal information, they can hack your email, bank, social media or other accounts.
👿 Trojans – Like its historical namesake, Trojan malware disguises itself as a legitimate file or application, but is actually designed to take control of your computer. It tricks you into loading and executing the malware onto your device. Once installed, it can disrupt, damage, steal or inflict other harmful actions on your data or network.
👿 Spyware – A version of malware that secretly gathers information about a person or organization and relays this data to other parties. Spyware can install itself on your computer and secretly monitor your online behavior, without your knowledge or permission.
👿 Worm – A self-replicating, self-spreading, malicious program that is able to copy and spread itself without the help of any other program. A worm can exploit security flaws or holes in software or operating systems, and replicate itself very quickly from a single copy. Worms can delete files on a system, slow down network traffic or send infected documents by email.
👿 Adware – It’s not quite a virus and it may not be obviously malicious, but it’s still irritating. Adware programs generate pop-up ads, can change your browser’s homepage, add spyware and bombard your device with advertisements. Adware can also cause long-term issues for your device.
Unfortunately, the list actually goes on, as more cyber threats mutate and develop, and cybercriminals become craftier. The best way to protect you, your family, your devices and your business this autumn is to get the best cybersecurity protection possible. ReasonLabs Cybersecurity, with its promise of enterprise-grade protection for every user, should be your first port of call. Our RAV next-generation antivirus program predicts, prevents and protects against all these cyber threats and many more.
So how can you outsmart these clever cyber disguises?
🎃 Install the best antivirus – ReasonLabs RAV antivirus is a great option for immediate cybersecurity protection.
🎃 Do not open emails, attachments or messages that look suspicious!
🎃 Do not supply any personal information – remember, your bank would never ask for your account number, Social Security number, name, address or password in an email or text message.
🎃 Do not use unknown USB sticks – never connect USB sticks or other storage media to your computer if you don’t know where they came from.
🎃 Always use a VPN service on public Wi-Fi networks, and avoid using public Wi-Fi for sensitive transactions.
At the spookiest time of the year – choose to be cyber smart for a secure, fright-free holiday! For more information, learn about our cybersecurity packages at: www.reasonlabs.com