Secure your business with our Christmas Advent Calendar
As we approach the Christmas period, many of us will be getting ready for the festive holidays. Wrapping up end-of-year tasks before we leave the office, end of term time for schools across the UK, and everyone shopping for gifts both on the high street and online. December is a very busy and hectic month of individuals and businesses alike, and cyber criminals are aware of this.
The Christmas period always sees a spike in cyber attacks with cyber criminals attempting to exploit vulnerabilities to compromise your data, devices, and finances. This year, in collaboration with the North West Cyber Resilience Centre we have created a cyber advent calendar, filled with our top tips and resources to help you remain secure, and ready for the New Year.
Tip #1: Avoid fake website and phishing emails by using legitimate payment services, such as PayPal, to keep your bank details protected.
Tip #6: Avoid the problem with package or missed delivery scams, do not click on links or call numbers contained within the message or email.
Tip #11: Don’t advertise when you’re out of the office for your Christmas party and post the office Christmas party as this presents an opportunity for hackers when they know staff are away.
Tip #16: Use our checklist of 8 things you should do to secure your business before you leave the office for the holidays.
Tip #2: Ensure a form of multi-factor authentication is turned on across all of your accounts and devices where possible.
Tip #7: Be aware of fake eCards/vouchers and if you are suspicious of the sender, do not click on links within the email.
Tip #12: Avoid giving hackers the toolkit to attack your website, make sure you have a website firewall installed, update your CMS and control access management.
Tip #17: Check for signs of Phishing in emails and messages, check things like poor grammar and spelling and low-quality versions of logos.
Tip #3: Avoid phishing emails by not clicking links or downloading attachments embedded within the emails and check the email address of the sender.
Tip #8: Install the latest updates and patches to stop criminals from exploiting faults in old systems or software.
Tip #13: Download the NCSC's Cyber Security Guide for Small Businesses for an overview of the basic things you can do to secure your accounts.
Tip #18: Always back up your data and keep one copy of your data separate to the original home of the data.
Tip #4: Avoid paying for fake products by checking the seller is legitimate and purchase directly from the manufacturer/
brand if possible.
Tip #9: Multiple passwords can be hard to remember them all. A good way to create strong, memorable passwords is by using 3 random words
Tip #14: Avoid connecting to public Wi-Fi networks. as public Wi-Fi can easily be compromised by cybercriminals.
Tip #19: Regularly scan your emails and systems for malware. This is something you should do all year round, not just ahead of a business shut down.
Tip #5: If donating to a charity this Christmas, check they’re legitimate using the Charities Commission website, and don’t donate through a bank transfer to the charity.
Tip #10: Secure your social accounts by making sure you know which staff members have access + which devices are signed into each account.
Tip #15: Have a Cyber Incident Plan in place in the event of an attack taking place.
Our free Cyber Incident Plan is ready for you to download and use!
Tip #20: Change the passwords that devices come with and regularly check them specifically to detect unchanged default passwords.
Tip #21: Ensure you have a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy to ensure you have an appropriate policy that covers which apps are permitted on devices used for work..
Tip #2: Make sure you have set the anti-virus system to auto scan all new files, including those downloaded from the internet or stored on a USB stick, external hard drive etc.
Tip #23: Secure your wireless network by changing the router's default name and password, not using the business's name in either.
Tip #24: Create your Cyber Action Plan using the Cyber Aware Action Plan to get a free personalised list of actions that will help you improve your cyber security.
Secure your business this Christmas with our Top Tips Advent Calendar
Download these cyber and online security resources
Follow these 6 steps to help prevent your business from falling victim to a ransomware attack.
How to prevent Ransomware