Ever wondered if your apps are spying on you? Now you can find out

It’s no secret that some applications are a little too interested in us and what we’re doing.

We’ve all had this experience. You might be talking to a friend about a new product that you’d like to try. Or perhaps you’ve discussed somewhere you’d like to visit.

Then the next time you go online you see adverts for the exact things you were talking about.

It’s more than a coincidence, surely???

Until recently, we haven’t had a lot of control over what information our apps are gathering about us.

Your business is losing hundreds of hours to spam every year

Spam emails. Everyone hates them.

It’s not just the emotional pain of clearing spam from your inbox. Having to do that is a real productivity killer, too.

A recent report found that each one of your employees could be losing up to 80 hours each year, thanks to filtering and deleting spam emails.

That’s a LOT of lost productivity.

Anywhere between 45% and 85% of emails generated each day are spam emails. And worryingly, that also includes malicious emails and those hoping to infect you with malware.

Is your business making these cyber security mistakes?

It feels like every day we’re being warned about a new threat to our cyber security, doesn’t it?

That’s for good reason. Last year, ransomware attacks alone affected 73% of UK businesses.

And the cost of cyber-crime is estimated to hit $10.5 trillion by 2025, according to the ‘2022 Cybersecurity Almanac’.

But we’re still seeing far too many businesses that aren’t taking this threat seriously.

It’s not only your data that you could lose if your company falls victim to a cyber-attack. The cost of remediation or mitigation can run into tens of thousands of £££.

And at the same time you’ll suffer an average of 21 days downtime after a cyber-attack. Imagine… 21 days without being able to use all your business technology as normal. It doesn’t bear thinking about.

Most ransomware victims would pay up if attacked again

Ransomware is one of the fastest growing cyber-crimes in the world. Last year, 37% of businesses were victim to an attack.

In case you didn’t know, a ransomware attack is where cyber criminals infiltrate your network (or device) and steal your data by encrypting it. The data is still there, but you can’t access it.

Then they demand you pay a large ransom fee for the encryption key.

If you don’t pay the demand (which can be tens or even hundreds of thousands of pounds), they delete your data.

It’s not just the cost of the ransom fee to worry about. There’s the stress, reputational damage and downtime that goes with it. In 2021, the average downtime suffered after a ransomware attack was 22 days.

Official advice is not to pay any ransomware demands.

Is this the end of passwords?

No-one likes passwords.

Creating them. Remembering them. Typing them in.

Your whole mood can change when an application you’re using suddenly logs you out, and you have to go through login all over again.

It’s frustrating for everyone.

So here’s some very welcome news, courtesy of Microsoft, Apple and Google. The tech giants have joined forces to kill off the password for good.

tKnowIT achieves Cyber Essentials certification for another year

I am pleased to announce that tKnowIT Limited has achieved Cyber Essentials certification for a further year.

Never use your browser’s password manager

Microsoft is always introducing new features and services to keep your people safe online, and your data secure.

As a business owner or manager, you should already know that weak or reused passwords are one of the biggest risks to data security.

A new update coming soon to Microsoft Edge will give you access to a new and improved password management feature. This will allow you to store all your passwords within your browser automatically, giving you a cost-effective way to avoid password-based cyber-attacks.

However. Although this new feature is more secure than using the same login details across multiple applications, our advice would be to avoid browser-based password managers in your business.

Why?

Russian cyber-attack threat: How to protect your business

The ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine has led to a sharp rise in cyber-attacks.

And while many of the attacks are between these two countries, there is very real potential for other countries to fall victim to cyber-attacks by Russia, thanks to the sanctions placed upon it.

Over in the US, President Joe Biden declared the government had been improving national cyber security defences for some time now.

A clever new type of ransomware attack

It seems like we’re talking about cyber scams a lot at the moment. And now there’s another new trick you need to be aware of.

Cyber criminals are smart. They’re forever coming up with new ways to infiltrate your devices and networks to access your valuable data.

Fortunately, the defence weapons continue to get stronger and stronger to help keep you protected. Some email systems are now especially good at identifying malicious messages and threats.

But if your website has a contact form – and most do – you face a new threat. That’s because cyber criminals are using web forms to spread malware.

Protect your business from these common financial phishing scams

The average office worker sends and receives around 121 emails every day.

And while that sounds like a lot, you may be shocked to learn that 3 billion phishing emails are sent each day. They account for 1% of all email traffic.

What’s a phishing email? It’s an email sent by cyber criminals that pretends to be from a trusted source, such as your bank, Amazon or a delivery company.