How to Respond to a Cyber ​​Attack: Tools and Best Practices

How to Respond to a Cyber ​​Attack: Tools and Best Practices

How to react in the event of a cyber attack

“Any company, association, municipality or administration, regardless of its size, can be the target of a cyber attack”, warns the French government. And these attacks can have very serious consequences for the organization that suffers them, especially financial, technical, reputational, legal or human. But individuals can also be affected by cyberattacks, whether it be the theft of personal or banking information, or the hijacking of a device or profile on an online platform.

How to Respond to a Cyber ​​Attack in the Workplace

To respond to these attacks, especially in the professional sphere, various best practices can be put in place. Through its cybermalveillance.gouv platform, the government issues several recommendations on how to respond in the event of a cyber attack. Here are the five points raised:

  1. Disconnect the machine from the Internet or computer network: Disconnect the network cable, WiFi or mobile data.
  2. Do not switch off the device: to preserve evidence.
  3. Alert IT support: so that he can quickly take the necessary measures.
  4. Stop using potentially vulnerable devices: in particular to avoid erasing traces of the attack that could be used for investigations.
  5. Warn your colleagues of the ongoing attack: Bad treatment by an employee could actually make the situation worse.
Cyber ​​Attack Government
The government has created a guide for employees in the event of a cyber attack. ©

How to respond as an individual to a cyber attack

Individuals can also become victims of cyber attacks. Phishing, spam and viruses are threats to your personal information. Therefore, it is important to react quickly to the slightest doubt and to apply certain best practices:

  1. Isolate the device: It’s important to quickly disconnect your device from the internet, especially by turning off Wi-Fi or mobile data.
  2. Change passwords: It’s important to change all of your passwords quickly, starting with those that seem corrupt to those that protect your banking information.
  3. Scan your device: It may be worthwhile to scan the potentially damaged device for threats or malware and remove them quickly. If you carry out these measures regularly, you can also anticipate possible threats.
  4. Report the incident: You can alert your ISP, the software manufacturer, but also the national cybercrime organizations who can intervene or investigate.

The 10 government tips to ensure your cyber security

For the French government “the intensification of uses” digital tools “Represents an opportunity for cybercriminals to evolve their attacks”. In fact, the authorities have created a list of ten best practices “Adoption is essential to ensure your cybersecurity”.

1. Protect access with strong passwords

The longer the passwords are and consist of different types of characters, the more secure they are. In fact, any password with fewer than 10 characters can be cracked very quickly, as this study shows. And if in doubt, don’t hesitate to change it. Using two-factor authentication can also be a wise decision.

2. Back up your data regularly

In the event of a hack, but also a breakdown, theft or loss of a device, backup may be the only way to recover your data. It is therefore advisable to regularly archive the contents of your devices on a physical medium, such as an external hard drive or USB stick, or in the cloud.

Discover tools to save your files

3. Apply security updates

Security updates are essential to prevent potential vulnerabilities from being exploited by attackers. Every new tool or interface is scrutinized by hackers trying to find the smallest vulnerability in order to steal personal information, banking information or passwords.

4. Use an antivirus program

There are many solutions to protect you from viruses and other malicious programs. Setting up these barriers, such as an antivirus program or firewall, reduces the risk of a computer attack by anticipating the presence of potential cookies or viruses on your hardware.

5. Only download your apps from official websites

For downloading any application or software, it is better to give preference to official websites or online stores. So, visit the App Store or Play Store or the official websites of the publishers. It is also recommended to avoid websites with strong potential for harm, such as illegal streaming websites.

6. Beware of unexpected or alarming news

Spam is the order of the day and is becoming more and more credible. Most often, these are messages that impersonate public services or well-known brands and attempt to steal your banking information. However, they can also contain viruses or malware. To protect against this, there are anti-spam tools.

7. Check the credibility of ecommerce websites

Online shopping accounts for a significant portion of retail business worldwide. In France, more than a quarter of the population prefers to shop online. The risks of fraud or hacking are therefore numerous and dubious sites are increasing. It is recommended to check the credibility of the consulted e-shop before purchasing, otherwise there is a risk of data theft.

8. Master your social networks

A lot of your personal information ends up on social media. Your profile is full of information that fuels the desires of cyber attackers and should not fall into the wrong hands. On some platforms it is possible to configure personal information that may or may not be publicly available, such as a date of birth. Again, a secure password and the use of double authentication are recommended.

9. Separate personal and professional use

Hardware, messaging, clouds… Sometimes the line between private and professional use is blurred. However, it’s a good idea to separate these two areas well so that a hacking attack on a personal account doesn’t harm your company and its sensitive data. Or vice versa, that if a company is compromised, your personal data will not be affected.

10. Avoid public or unknown WiFi networks

Public WiFi networks are not considered the most secure networks. They can sometimes fall into the hands of hackers who can collect the personal information of anyone who connects to them. Likewise, some highly coordinated attacks go so far as to hijack your device from public networks in order to take control of it. Therefore, give preference to 4G networks or opt for using a VPN.

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