Cyber Security: Why Should You Care?

Cybersecurity is something that many consumers and business owners place on the back burner. It’s until they are targeted when they realize the importance of creating a secure digital environment. If you’re skeptical of cybersecurity and the benefits it offers, here are a few undeniable reasons you should care.

Hackers are Developing New Infiltration Techniques

Just because your computer or network is secure now doesn’t mean it will remain secure. In McAfee’s 2018 Threats Predictions Report, cybersecurity analysts reveal that hackers are developing new attacks to damage and disrupt their victims’ devices. One such disturbing trend is the use of hired hackers. Rather than doing it themselves, nefarious individuals and entities are hiring hackers to infiltrate victims’ networks.

More Devices Are Now Connected to the Internet

Statistics show that the average U.S. household has seven internet-connected devices. From washing machines and refrigerators to TVs, video game consoles, smartphones and more, countless devices now support internet connectivity. A smart TV, for instance, typically supports app downloads while a smart refrigerator may notify the user when he or she is out of milk.

This collection of internet-connected devices, known as the internet of things (IoT), creates new concerns for cyber crime. If a device is connected to the internet, a hacker can potentially access it. And if that device is connected to a local network as well, a hacker may be able to access other devices on the same network.

Cryptocurrency Allows Hackers to Cover Their Tracks

In the past, when hackers extorted money from victims, they would seek traditional forms of payment. This created a digital trail that authorities could follow to find the person or entity behind the attack. Now, however, hackers are using cryptocurrency like Bitcoin and Litecoin to cover their tracks. If a hacker deploys ransomware on a victim’s computer, for example, he or she may demand payment in Bitcoin to prevent authorities from finding them. Since cryptocurrency isn’t regulated by governments or banks, it’s painfully difficult to track transactions.

The Cost of Cyber Crime Is Increasing

Victims of cyber crime face heavy financial costs, which are expected to increase in the future. According to a study conducted by Juniper Research, cyber crime will cost businesses more than $2 trillion by 2020. When a business is hacked, experiences a data breach or other cyber crime, it must spend money to find and repair the vulnerability as well as mitigate any damage that occurred.

Rates of Cyber Crime Is Increasing

Of course, the frequency of which cyber crime occurs is also increasing. One study found that 27 percent of all global internet users have encountered a cyber threat. In India, nearly half of all users have encountered a cyber threat. As cyber criminals see the profit in their illegal activities, other nefarious individuals will explore the dark world of cyber crime.

Effective Cybersecurity Solutions Are Available

The good news is that you can protect yourself and your data from cyber crime by using the right cybersecurity tools. A virtual private network (VPN) like those ranked at, for example, encrypt your internet traffic so that hackers can’t see what you are doing. Any data you send or receive is scrambled, and only the website to which you are connected can see your activity.

Using anti-malware software can also protect you from cyber crime. It’s designed to detect and protect against the deployment of malware. When combined with other cybersecurity measures, it’s an effective tool to lower your risk of being hacked.

All consumers, business owners and professionals should make cybersecurity a priority. Cyber crime isn’t going anytime soon. As revealed here, it’s expected to increase in the years to come. By taking a proactive approach towards cybersecurity, though, you can keep cyber threats at bay.