You are predictable
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Solutions start with stating the facts and the fact is:
You are predictable.
Why this should bother you? When you are predictable, you are an easy target for cyber-criminals, and are under threat of an attack. Let’s add additional facts to your threat level equation:
- Hackers have great analytical skills,
- All your personal data is laid out online especially in social media, and
- Hackers possess the art of deception.
The dynamic combination of these four elements make you and your business vulnerable.
In fact, targeted attacks to seemingly impenetrable large organizations are based on these factors.
Hackers will not spend their time, money and effort on trying to bypass systems and control. No, they are smarter than that! They know that the only thing they need to do is to bypass human nature.
That is why they study you and use information you leave out in the open against you.
How nice. Right?
The “Human Factor” has always been considered the weak link in security. Unfortunately, taking advantage of human nature by compromising your patterns and daily habits is used by sophisticated hackers and predators to connect data you have online in order to target you individually.
But let’s take a step back and define behavioural patterns because I have a feeling that most of you have no idea what I am talking about.
Pattern is a repeated form of a specific behaviour or action (habit) which does not require a mental effort to be performed. It is done automatically by your brain. It is like an autopilot of a plane.
Here are some examples of behaviour:
- Waking up every day at 5 am,
- Waking up every day at 5am and eating eggs with fresh juice for breakfast,
- Reading a book before sleep,
- Shopping groceries every Friday at 5 pm,
- Going to a yoga lesson every Monday at 6 pm,
- Driving at 120 km per hour on the highway,
- Always eating a salad with your meals.
If you do those without any effort, then they become habits and when habits happen at a specific pace or frequency they become behaviour patterns. The keyword here is “effortless consistency”. If you force yourself to do them and you do not repeat them consistently without any effort, then they are not yet a pattern. The only patterns you have in these cases are: 1. forcing yourself to form a habit and 2. Being consistently inconsistent in doing that specific habit.
Many people who want to improve different areas of their lives learn methods and use tools which allow them to form better habits and eliminate negative ones.
But you might wonder how is this relevant to your security.
Want a little help?
Just like in any area of our life in security there are also good and bad habits and based on those you do unconsciously with consistency you have depleting or empowering security behaviour patterns. If you have depleting behaviour patterns you are predictable for cyber-criminals because they know your vulnerabilities and how to take advantage of them in order to initiate an attack against you. In fact, this is their top approach as they want easy, fast and cheap attacks. They do not over complicate things.
How to fix the situation
Behaviour patterns though, are not the only thing that has a negative impact. In fact, you can make them your allies if you know how to take advantage of them and when you should avoid certain behaviour.
One thing is certain:
Patterns of behaviour and habits define your security levels.
What does it take to be unpredictable to hackers?
If you want to fix the situation the approach is very simple once you know the secret. The way you learn about empowering habits and eliminate depleting ones in other areas of your life you do the same regarding your security. By learning effortless consistent behaviour habits which replace the dangerous ones you become unpredictable for cyber-criminals!
I mean, if those habits that let cyber-criminals in do not exist anymore it will be much more difficult for them to read you and predict how they can take advantage of you.
Let me give you a few examples of behaviour patterns that make hackers’ job more difficult:
- You do not connect to public WiFi. Instead you connect to a WiFi you control.
- You do not use your child or pet name as a password to all of your accounts. Instead you have unique, strong passwords for each account you have.
- You do not rash to click on every link saying that your bank account is charged by a transaction you did not authorise or that you have won a trip in Jamaica! Guess what! You just felt into a trap. The only thing flying to Jamaica is your protection and the criminal who goes on vacation with your money!
That is how you become unpredictable. Your attacker needs to figure out a new way to attack you and if there is one thing I know for sure, this is not something they like.
By increasing your unpredictability levels, you automatically increase your protection levels.
And, in order to increase your unpredictability levels, you just need to do things differently. You need to add the quality of uniqueness to your security signature.
The tip of the day is: You need to become unpredictable.
Apply what you learn immediately. Sign-up for my free training.
So I am now turning it over to you. If you found this tip useful please share it with others. Cyber-criminals fight is a collective effort, and each of us can contribute to this. I would also like to hear your thoughts:
Do you believe that unpredictability is going to increase your protection levels?
I cannot wait to hear your comments so leave them below and let’s continue the conversation.
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