Times have changed, and so has college life. Gone are the days of simple notebooks and pencils; today’s students juggle multiple devices, opening doors to unprecedented risks of online photo and data theft.
Despite considering themselves tech-savvy, Gen-Z and millennials are prime phishing targets, with a staggering 20% of Gen-Z falling victim to identity theft, according to a study by Atlas VPN.
This young crowd is under constant cyber attack, facing threats such as:
- Bogus Tuition Notices: Scammers send fake emails claiming students owe money or risk enrollment issues.
- Fake Financial Aid Sites: Fraudulent websites steal information or install malware when students seek financial assistance.
- Public Wi-Fi Hacks: Hackers create fake public Wi-Fi to harvest passwords and private data.
- Social Media Scams: Scammers gather data to hack accounts or impersonate students.
- Blackmail Threats: Cybercriminals hack phones or social accounts to extort money using private photos.
Why are these tech-savvy youngsters falling victim?
- Cybersecurity Education Gap: Limited education on cyber threats makes students vulnerable.
- Over-Sharing on Social Media: Their familiarity with social media leads to divulging personal info.
- Limited Credit History: Lack of credit history aids cyber scammers in opening accounts.
- Device Overload: Multiple connected devices provide more entry points for attacks.
- Distraction: Focused on studies and socializing, students overlook cybersecurity.
What can be done?
While we offer robust cybersecurity solutions, ensuring your children stay safe when they leave for college requires education. Here are 14 actions to impart:
- Install Reliable Protection: Invest in strong antivirus and spyware protection.
- Stay Updated: Enable automatic updates for devices and software.
- Keep Software Current: Regularly update browsers, extensions, and OS.
- Back Up Regularly: Safeguard data by routinely backing up to the cloud.
- Secure Online Transactions: Use secure HTTPS sites for credit card info.
- Beware of Public Wi-Fi: Avoid using public Wi-Fi; opt for personal hotspots or VPNs.
- Phishing Awareness: Avoid unknown sender emails; Google and verify.
- Strong Passwords: Use unique, strong passwords and a password manager.
- Clear Cookies: Regularly delete cookies to prevent potential breaches.
- Trusted Sources Only: Download software and apps from reliable sources.
- Multifactor Authentication: Add an extra layer of security to accounts.
- Protect Passwords: Avoid password sharing and keep devices locked.
- Cover Webcams: Prevent unauthorized access with webcam covers.
- Device Registration: Register devices with the school in case of theft.
Cybersecurity awareness is vital. A few minutes of conscious effort can prevent devastating cyberattacks. As everything involves technology, these lessons are more crucial than ever.
Is your organization in need of comprehensive cybersecurity training for employees? Start with our FREE Cybersecurity Risk Assessment to build a robust defense against evolving cyber threats. Click here to get started. Your organization’s security matters!