Technology Blog

Don’t Let Cyber Grinches Steal Your Data: How to Stay Cyber-Smart During the Holidays

employee using credit card for safe online purchase to avoid holiday hackers

As you break out the hot cocoa and start shopping for presents, don’t forget to shield your business from those sneaky cyber grinches lurking in the shadows. Holiday hackers are on the prowl, waiting to steal your data and devastate your festive season.

But don’t worry—this article is here to help you stay cyber-smart and keep the holidays merry and bright.

‘Tis the Season for Scammers

In this festive season, our online activity spikes, and with it, the chances of falling victim to cyber crimes. Ransomware attacks alone have increased by 30% globally during the holiday months.

From fake websites to malicious links, scammers have a bag full of tricks up their sleeves to steal sensitive business information. That’s why cyber awareness and protection are crucial when it comes to online activity, especially during the holidays.

Why Are Holiday Hackers on the Hunt?

The holiday season is an ideal time for holiday hackers to strike. As businesses gear up for the festive rush, employees may feel overwhelmed and let their guard down. And that’s exactly what cybercriminals are counting on.

  • Distracted Workers: Employees may be more distracted than usual during the holiday frenzy, making them easy targets for scams and phishing attempts.
  • Year-End Rush: Businesses and individuals are trying to wrap up their tasks before the end of the year—they may overlook security measures in their haste.
  • Fewer Employees In-Office: Many employees take time off to spend the holidays with their families. However, this leaves fewer people to catch and stop a cyberattack.
  • Strained Network Resources: With increased online traffic and sales, businesses experience network strain that makes them vulnerable to attacks.

So, what can you do to avoid falling prey to these cyber grinches?

Unwrap These 7 Cyber-Smart Tips

The good news is that there is a way to stay cyber-smart during the holidays. Here are some tips to help you keep your business safe from holiday hackers.

1. Beware of Suspicious Emails and Links

Cybercriminals often use phishing scams that trick users into revealing sensitive information. Remember never to click on links or attachments from unknown senders.

2. Update Your Software

Make sure all your software, including antivirus and firewalls, are up-to-date. Hackers often exploit vulnerabilities in outdated systems to gain access. So, update early and update often.

3. Follow Secure Password Practices

Ensure that you use strong passwords for all your accounts. Consider using a password manager to generate and securely store complex passwords. This will make it harder for hackers to crack them.

4. Train Your Employees

Your employees are an important line of defense against holiday hackers. Make sure they are aware of potential threats and know how to identify them. Remind your employees to never share personal information over the phone or email, even if it seems legitimate.

5. Backup Your Data Regularly

In case of a cyberattack, having recent and offline backups can save your business from significant data loss. Make sure to regularly back up your data and store it securely.

6. Use Multi-Factor Authentication

Multi-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security to your accounts. Consider using it for all your business and personal accounts.

7. Consistently Monitor with an MSP

Partnering with a Managed Service Provider (MSP) can help monitor your network for any suspicious activity from holiday hackers and keep your systems up-to-date. This will give you peace of mind during the holidays and beyond.

Bonus Tip: Stay Vigilant All Year Round

While the holiday season may be a prime time for cyberattacks, it’s essential to stay vigilant all year. Cybercriminals are always on the lookout for vulnerabilities, so make sure to always implement these good practices.

Secure Your Sleigh Bells with Mercer Bucks

At Mercer Bucks, we know that the holiday season can be a stressful time for businesses. That’s why we offer comprehensive cybersecurity solutions to keep your sleigh bells jingling all year round. From network monitoring to disaster recovery planning, our team of experts is here to help you stay cyber-smart and protect your business from those pesky holiday hackers.

Get in touch with us today to learn more about how we can secure your business and give you peace of mind during the holidays.