How your desktop computer can protect against hackers in 2021

5th February 2021

Most of us are ready to evolve beyond 2020. But beware. Cybercriminals are evolving, too.

As the technology we use develops, hackers are simultaneously becoming more sophisticated in their tactics.

While you may feel safe at home behind your desktop, hackers are still looking for ways to target you. Will those figures increase in 2021? Experts say, emphatically, yes. Luckily, that desktop you’re sitting behind can provide a lot of protection.

Ahead, we’ll see how the security industry is stepping up, and how your business can too.

Better basic protections
ComputerWeekly has gone as far as saying that Coronavirus could be the largest-ever cyber security threat in recorded history. Hackers will no doubt continue to use the global crisis as a means of exploiting users. Couple this with a glut of remote employees (aka: targets), and bad actors are using the shift to manipulate every possible entry point.

At minimum, PCmag recommends securing the following common cyber targets:

  • Your computer fleet. That means up-to-date antivirus protection. Changing the settings so these updates happen automatically can be a big help.
  • Your home networks. Never rely on default WiFi passwords. Most hardware serial numbers can be easily traced and hacked.
  • Using a company or third-party-provided VPN can also keep online activity more secure.
  • Your communications. See about investing in an email encryption service or secure business messaging app.
  • Your data. Start by creating a separate account for each user on your machine, and adjust the parental controls as needed.
  • Sensitive documents may be kept in an encrypted vault for an additional layer of protection.
  • Your passwords. You know the drill. Different passwords for different sites, no exceptions. Oh, and anything business-adjacent should really have a two-factor authentication step.

Significant upskilling
So much of life is about supply and demand. Same goes for security.

Right now there’s a dangerous imbalance of qualified IT security staff to help combat the onslaught of malicious cyber activity.

Infosecurity Magazine reports, “over half (51%) of cybersecurity professionals said their organisation is at moderate or extreme risk due to staff shortages.”

That means increased reliance on automated security tools. Though even the best artificial intelligence or machine learning-powered online vulnerability management tool can’t compare with expert staff. And even highly customised security solutions need some in-person oversight.

isc2’s Cybersecurity Workforce Study identifies four areas organisations can focus on in their upskill efforts:

  1. In-house training and development
  2. Improved applicant qualification requirements
  3. Competitive compensation packages to attract seasoned contractors, new graduates or employees from different industries
  4. Better cross-training initiatives with IT professionals

Resurgence of the desktop
Rapid work shifts require device shifts, too. It’s one reason desktops are experiencing a revival. When it comes to security and personal adaptability, they’re an essential piece of equipment, no matter where you work.

It’s desktops’ built-in security that really makes them so valuable right now. For those working at home, they help satisfy the increased need for endpoint security control, offering unique solutions that address the security and privacy concerns of public and home-based workspaces.

From start-up to shutdown, desktops also feature integrated protection against attacks with better online security and easy recovery that can bring your PC back from the brink without ever leaving your desk.

Whether enhancing connectivity and collaboration at home or in a central office, desktops also provide a dedicated mix of function and design, including:

  • Portability with no compromise on power
  • Quick lead times
  • Health benefits + better ergonomics
  • Smaller footprints
  • Versatility
  • Ability to connect and switch between work and home PC on a single display
  • Gorgeous Aesthetics

Ultimately, there’s no way to know which will evolve faster: cybersecurity or criminality. Regardless, your business can’t afford to wait and find out.