6 tips to help you avoid cybercrime

Despite safeguards in place, the rate of cybercrime continues to trend at an all-time high. In 2021, the Federal Trade Commission received 5.7 million reports of identity theft, fraud and related incidents.

All it takes is one mistake for cybercriminals to exploit a faulty system or unsuspecting victim. Luckily, there are six easy steps you can take to help prevent these digital crimes:

1. Implement multi-factor authentication

Adding this layer of protection onto your digital accounts can drastically reduce your likelihood of being hacked.

2. Update your software routinely

Cybercriminals will look for ways to exploit out-of-date protection. Turn on any automatic software updates, where available, on your phones, laptops and tablets. This applies to applications and web browsers as well for an improved line of defense.

3. Use a password manager

Generate more intricate and unique passwords for maximum effectiveness. Don’t rely on apps and websites themselves to remember your passwords.

4. Make transactions on your private network

Avoid public Wi-Fi networks when making purchases online or sending sensitive information of any kind. Charge your devices at home as well and avoid free public charging stations as they are targets for cybercriminals.

5. Think twice before you click once

Scammers often use phishing campaigns to trick you into clicking links or attachments that can harm your computer or steal information. If the communication seems suspicious, call the sender to verify the email.

6. Back up critical files securely 

Consider backing up important information on a separate drive that uses encryption to store sensitive files. Test this secure location from time to time to ensure they are up to date and safeguarded.

Not sure if you are fully protected against cybercrimes? Talk to your independent agent today to review your policy and to discuss The Hanover’s cyber coverage offerings. Check out our cyber resources to see what is right for you.


Federal Trade Commission


University of California-Davis Health

Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency