7 IT Consultant Approved Tips on How to Keep Your Email Safe from a Cyber Attack

May 22, 2019

Hundreds of billions of emails are being sent in the world every single day. While some of them are inconsequential, there are many emails that contain sensitive and confidential information. There’s a good chance that you have also sent at least one email in the past week that contains information you wouldn’t want anybody getting their hands on.

In an age when even the emails of high-ranking US officials have been repeatedly compromised, it’s important to do everything to safeguard your email from cyber threats.

Here are 7 tips from an IT consultant to keep your email protected from cybercriminals.

1. Secure Sensitive Emails with Encryption Software

When it comes to email encryption, there are many types of software to choose from. If you shop around a bit, you can easily find something that will fit well into your existing workflow, keeping your email safe from hackers without complicating things too much.

2. Avoid Using Public WiFi Networks

Cyber criminals are capable of snooping on all the information going through a certain network, and public WiFi networks are easier for them to gather information from. They can also collect your log-in credentials practically in real time as you type them. If you really must connect to public WiFi, use an encrypted connection.

3. Restrict Information You Share Online

Social media is one of the cyber criminal's favorite hacking tools. Hackers can get vital information directly from self-written bios and profiles. This information allows them to bypass common account security questions like “What is your mother’s maiden name?”– one that is often used by banks, government agencies, and other institutions.

Although it’s impossible to completely protect all your personal data online, IT consultants advise users to be careful about any information they share.

4. Regularly Back Your Information Up

Consistently backing information up is a simple but effective way to protect yourself from a potential ransomware attack. Because you already have a backed up version of your sensitive data, there's no longer any need to worry about encryption or paying the hackers a ransom.

5. Keep Yourself Safe Even on Mobile

Not all cyber crimes happen on desktops. Mobile phones can also get attacked. Aside from being vulnerable to phishing via email, mobile users should also be wary of the different apps they are downloading daily.

6. Restrict Physical Access to Your Devices

There are also instances where a hacker tries to physically access your machine. For instance, they might try to get a hold of your device to install a keylogger. Once they succeed, hacking into your email and snooping around your personal info becomes child’s play.

To lessen the chances of this happening, be sure to log out when you step away from a device - your laptop, for example - and always use a unique and secure password.

7. Do not Click Suspicious Links

While this seems like a no-brainer - one that you shouldn't have an IT consultant remind you of - many people still fall into the trap of sketchy links. Clicking on a suspicious link might install a keylogger in your computer, or lead to a fake website that steals your private info.

If you suspect that a link you received via email is fake, check to make sure the email comes from someone you know, or else from an authoritative and legitimate source.

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