“Cyber crime is increasingly sophisticated and organised, but complex and poorly understood. It’s under-reported because victims are often embarrassed and confused,” said Lloyd Borrett, security evangelist at AVG (AU/NZ).
AVG has issued a list of tips for businesses to stay safe for the start of National Cyber Security Awareness Week 2011, a government initiative that runs from May 30 to June 3.
- Install internet security software to protect against identity theft, social networks, spyware, viruses and other malicious software. Make sure it’s always on, up to date, and scans all of your files regularly.
- Think carefully before you click on links and attachments particularly in emails and on social networking sites. Don’t expose yourself to viruses, malicious software or scam websites designed to steal your personal information.
- Regularly adjust your privacy settings on social networking sites. You’re not the customer of the social networking websites, you’re the contributor of often sensitive information. So make sure you properly manage what is shared and with whom it’s shared.
- Report or talk to someone about anything online that makes you uncomfortable. You can install the Government’s Cybersafety Help Button onto your desktop or task bar and have help just a click away.
- Stop and think before you share any photos, personal or financial information. If you are asked to provide such sensitive information, the request is probably from a thief, or an idiot! Play it safe: simply don’t provide the information.
- Use a strong password and change it at least twice a year. Invent illogical word, number and symbol combinations to create the strongest passwords and change them regularly. Always change from default passwords, and never tick the ‘remember this password’ box.
- Know what your staff are doing online. Make sure they know how to stay safe and encourage them to report anything suspicious.
“We work to protect the public using advanced technologies, but by participating in National Cyber Security Awareness Week we can also continue our efforts to help people understand how the bad guys have bought age-old fraudulent human and social engineering exploits into the online world,” said Borrett.
The Federal Government also offers its tips at Stay Smart Online (www.staysmartonline.gov.au).