New Year, New Cyber You: How To Dodge Cyber Criminals In 2024

Business Insights

After consuming our bodyweight in Quality Street, many of us trudge into 2024 promising to get fitter and healthier, only to fall off the wagon before January's out.

But there's one New Year's resolution you should keep…

With cyber threats evolving at a record rate, being cyber-aware has never mattered more. Whether that's in business, when shopping online, or keeping on top of your children's online activity – read on to find out how to up your cyber defences in 2024.

Future-Proof Your Cyber security in 2024

According to Cybercrime Magazine, the cost of cyber attacks on the global economy is predicted to top $10.5 trillion this year.

Follow these 8 steps and avoid cyber criminals like the plague:

    1. Keep your password game strong

In 2024, it's time to ditch ‘Stuart1234'. Come on guys, you can do better than that!

Create robust, unique passwords for each of your accounts and update them regularly. It's tempting to come up with one belter and carry it across every account – especially if you're lazy like me. BUT, DON'T.

Want a convenient solution with added security? Use a password manager to ditch your forgotten-my-password stresses!

    2. Welcome biometrics and AI-enhanced security

Unfortunately, setting strong passwords alone won't cut it. For complete protection, you need something a little extra.

Biometric authentication and AI-enhanced security systems aren't just techy buzzwords, they're your frontline defences against sophisticated cyber attacks.

Biometrics, like fingerprints and facial recognition, are unique to you, making duplication pretty much impossible – giving you easy access and high security. Happy days!

AI-enhanced security, on the other hand, employs advanced algorithms to continuously monitor your online activities, alerting you of any potential threats. This proactive approach to cyber security can protect you against phishing scams, dodgy websites, and unauthorised transactions. Get it done!

    3. Update your software like your life depends on it

Those annoying pop-ups from Norton or McAfee reminding you update your software… Don't ignore them, they're more important than you think. Regular updates patch security holes and protect you from the latest threats.

Make it a habit to update pronto – your cyber safety depends on it.

    4. Don't fall for Phishers

2024's phishing scams are smarter and sneakier than ever. Never click on links or download attachments from spontaneous emails, and always verify the source before acting – even if it seems to come from a trusted entity.

These guys are clever – it's probably not an email from Royal Mail.

    5. Don't get blinded by online shopping sales

Online sales are exciting, causing our dopamine levels to soar and our defences to DROP! But, remember, shopping sales also create the perfect opportunity for hackers to catch you unawares.

Only shop from reputable websites, look for the HTTPS padlock symbol in the URL, and use a credit card for added fraud protection.

If a deal looks too good to be true, it almost certainly is.

    6. Beef-up your network

With the rise of remote working, securing your home network is more important than ever. Use strong encryption for your Wi-Fi, change default router passwords, and consider a VPN for added security when working remotely or using public Wi-Fi.

It's too tempting to jump on the (unsecured) Wi-Fi in Starbies, but do you want to end up a victim of identity theft, malware-riddled devices, or ransomware attacks?

Just stick to your Grande Cappuccino.

    7. Get social savvy

Your social media profiles are a goldmine for cybercriminals. Scrutinise your privacy settings, think twice before handing over personal details, and be aware of who's lurking in your network.

And, keep your presence private. Oversharing on social accounts might make you feel connected, but before you know it, you'll have walked right into a cyber trap.

No, it wasn't really Costco offering you a 50% off coupon…

    8. Know your cyber threats

Do yourself a favour and keep yourself updated with the latest cyber security trends and threats.

Educating yourself, your employees, and your family on safe internet practices, sharing personal information, and how to spot unsafe websites and emails puts you a step ahead of black hat fraudsters.

Gear up for a cyber-secure 2024

By committing to your New Year's resolution, and following this guide, you should be able to swerve cyber hacktivists in 2024.

Just remember: every click, every password, every update, and every informed decision reduces the chance of you becoming a target.

If you're a business owner who wants to avoid data breeches an cyberattacks this year – implementing ISO 27001 is a wise move.

Here's to a safer, smarter, more secure 2024!


Stuart Barker | Stuart is a cyber security expert known as the ISO 27001 Ninja, and author of the best-selling ISO 27001 Toolkit. He is Director at High Table, the ISO 27001 Company: