3 Cybersecurity Mistakes of 2018 Revisited

In 2018 we saw a rise of problems with Internet of Things (IoT) devices, cryptomining, and a slew of breaches. Read on for how to prepare for the anticipated threats in 2019.

Early in 2018 we learnt IoT computerized objects are doing more than meets the eye, like your smart tv. Threats from IoT devices are twofold. First, they vacuum up your data without consent and second hackers can re-purpose these devices for their own use.

First, let’s talk about data privacy.

Companies, like Samba, collect tons of data like your geolocation, contact lists, or even your voice commands then can sell it to third party advertisers. Facebook got in trouble this year when users realized the social media giant was collecting and selling data to Cambridge Analytica without consent.

To tackle this problem, Europe passed General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) this year requiring companies to get informed consent from users when they are using your data.

Second, hackers can repurpose your IoT device for their own use.

Often ‘smart devices’ don’t prioritize security. Bleeping Computer found DDoS trojan attacks against IoT devices rose 30% in 2018, and this is expected to increase in 2019.

Another threat menacing your IoT devices is cryptojacking, when a hacker can remotely harness the processing power of your smart device to look for cryptocurrency like Bitcoin.

Another massive threat this year was the rise in company breaches.

Everyone from Marriott to USPS and Air Canada had their secure data stolen in 2018 and unfortunately that will not slow in 2019. As antivirus defense becomes even more secure, malware continues to evolve to take them head on.

What did we learn in 2018?

– Read the privacy agreements on new accounts and devices so you know what data they can access. If the terms are too difficult to sift through you can search the product online.

– Explore the privacy settings on each new device you bring into your home. Also check them out on your different social media platforms.

– If you have a few Internet of Things you should run them on a separate network than your personalized devices like your computer or tablet.

– Change the passwords on your router from the default ones. And be sure to update your passwords regularly.

– Brace yourself for a breach and know what etiquette to take afterwards – we organized everything you need to know here

All in all 2018 was a rough year but we learnt a lot.
Comment below with something you learned about cyber security this year and be sure to share this article with a friend.