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Phishing will remain one of the most important cyber threats for some time to come

It is crucial that we take appropriate technical protection measures and learn to respond appropriately to suspicious messages.

Cybercriminals exploit two types of vulnerabilities: technical and human. The technical vulnerabilities arise mainly related to the fact that it is extremely difficult for IT managers to install all security updates on time and to keep all set-ups perfectly secure. While IT experts are required to perform dozens of actions perfectly, a hacker only needs a single mistake to get in.

The main human traits that cybercriminals exploit are ignorance and gullibility. We are so happy when we get something for free or when we win something that our natural sense of suspicion disappears. When we are scared, we react impulsively and often less thoughtfully. Cybercriminals are eager to exploit this.

Not every message can be trusted

We can learn that not every message can be trusted and that you can never be entirely sure who sent a message. Without wanting to create fear and excessive distrust, sending out a regular and effective warning about immediate threats can make a big difference.

The CCB has developed a smartphone app to send warnings about threats quickly. This app raises an alarm if, for example, a new phishing campaign is detected in the messages forwarded to the CCB. It is therefore important to keep forwarding the suspicious messages to suspicious@safeonweb.be and to install the smartphone app and connect it to your Wi-Fi network. This way, you will be regularly alerted and will stay abreast of the most important threats.

Miguel De Bruycker, Director Centre for Cybersecurity Belgium

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