Five quick steps to be safer online from the growing cyber threat

Deputy Prime Minister and Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, has urged local residents to take proactive measures to protect their personal information from the growing cyber threat.

It follows a 15 per cent increase in cyber-related incidents in the last financial year according to the latest Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) Threat Report.

“The ACSC identified 47,000 cyber incidents during that period,” Mr Joyce said.

“More than half of these incidents were online scams or fraud, that’s an increase of about 22 per cent.”

That same year, the ACSC reported that 7,283 cyber security incidents affected major Australian businesses.

“The Coalition Government is providing assistance with $230 million over four years to fund the 33 initiatives in the Cyber Security Strategy but we need your help too,” Mr Joyce said.

“Local residents in the New England should know that cyber security is everyone’s business – parents, employees, students, business owners - we’re all responsible.”

Here are five quick steps to be safer online:

1. Limit what you share – be proactive in managing your privacy. You don’t need to publish your birthdate, birthplace and profession on Facebook. The more details your put online, the easier it is to steal your identity.

2. Create strong passwords – at least 16 characters long. We know that 81% of hacking related breaches leverage either stolen and or weak passwords. “Password1” does not cut it.

3. Protect yourself online – regularly update all software and ensure you have anti-virus software on all your devices including your smartphone and tablet.

4. Back up your data – do this as often as you can.

5. Avoid online scams – watch out for suspicious messages, links and attachments. You should always be suspicious of unsolicited emails requesting personal or financial information.

For more information on cyber security, visit: https://www.staysmartonline.gov.au/

This story Barnaby Joyce has five tips to keep your personal information safe online first appeared on The Armidale Express.

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