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Cyber ​​attacks on rise, 1 in 4 Indians at risk: Here's how to protect yourself

According to the latest report by global security company Kaspersky, 22.9 percent of web users in India are at risk of web-borne threats. These threats can harm their victims in a variety of ways. Here's how you can keep yourself safe.

Written By: Om Gupta New Delhi Published on: May 18, 2024 12:25 IST
Cyber threats
Image Source : FILE Cyber threats

In the first quarter of this year (January-March period), nearly one in four Indians experienced hacking attacks. Malware continues to be a significant cyber threat, as indicated by a report released on Friday. According to the quarterly data from global security company Kaspersky, 22.9 percent of web users in the country were targeted by web-borne threats. Additionally, about 20.1 percent of users were susceptible to local threats during the same period.

"Malware remains a major threat to the users in India. Targeted malware attacks continue to be a major source of worry for organisations and users alike," said the company.

Cybercriminals exploited the vulnerabilities in the browsers and their plugins.

"File-less malware is being seen as the most dangerous web threat this quarter since it does not leave any trace for static analysis of the attack," the findings showed.

Social engineering techniques such as phishing, baiting, and pretexting continued to be common methods of cyber attacks on Indian users. Kaspersky reported that its web security solutions blocked 12,454,797 unique Internet-borne cyber threats during the January-March period. Additionally, it detected and blocked 16,751,049 local incidents on computers during the same period.

How to protect yourself from various cyber threats?

Phishing Attacks:

Never share sensitive information such as bank details, your mother's maiden name, or your date of birth on any website, even if it appears to be a legitimate bank site. Always log into your Net banking account through the official bank's URL only.

Vishing Scams (Phone-based Frauds):

Elderly individuals are often targeted in these types of banking scams. They should avoid entertaining calls from strangers, especially those claiming to renew insurance policies or offering deals that sound too good to be true. Never share banking details over the phone with anyone, including any kind of OTP.

Smishing Frauds (Text Message Scams):

Be vigilant of text messages you receive and never trust any SMS claiming that you have won lotteries or urging you to dial a provided number. Do not call the numbers shared in unsolicited text messages, as it can easily lead to your bank details being compromised.

Social media frauds: 

Avoid sharing personal photos, intimate video calls, or banking details with virtual acquaintances. Also, do not send money to someone you meet online.

Sextortion (sexual content on video calls): 

Avoid accepting video calls from unknown numbers. Always cover your device's camera when receiving calls from unknown numbers, even if you are chatting online with friends. Hackers and scammers may use your front camera to record you at any time.

Online trading frauds: 

Always verify physical objects before exchanging money. Be cautious of QR code payments. Always verify account details before making payments.

SIM swapping scams: 

Never submit photocopies of your identification documents without proper authentication. If your SIM is unexpectedly blocked, contact your telecom service provider immediately.

ALSO READ: Government issues warning to Android smartphone users, personal data at risk: Here's why

Inputs from IANS

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