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How To Be CyberSecure

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While the world is evolving to be a better place, it is far from perfect. In recent times there have been 3 major cyber security breaches in multiple countries affecting thousands of organizations and individuals. The latest cyber security threat locks up computers and brings production to a standstill. As a result, the companies don’t just lose out on a lot of work hours but also have to spend a lots of money in either paying the ransom or trying to get rid of the threat themselves.

After the three major breaches in the cyber security world, one thing definitely stands out. Every company big or small can be infiltrated and therefore needs to make sure their computers and systems are up to the mark. Here’s how you can make your company cybersecure. 

1. Update your Firewal
It seems to be the most obvious answer to such an important question but it is the first step in securing your systems and computers. A good firewall is the front line of your army. If the front line is weak, the entire army won’t be able to face the opposition. Thereby it is paramount to have an updated firewall that covers all forms of attacks, from the regular worms to ransomware attacks.

2. Cyber fire drills
Just like fire drills for extreme situations in real life, make sure employees know the procedure to be followed while facing a cyber crisis. Conducting seminars to educate all employees and not just the IT team about the increasing risks of cyber security and how to recognize files that might be carrying malicious content will help curb the spread of the malware, if not stop it. A lot of these threats depend on people opening random files which are malicious and spread to connected devices. Companies can also conduct dry runs by sending random files without malware to random employees to check if the tips are helping or if additional help is required.

3. Storage
Store only the extremely important information and purge other irrelevant data. It is important to clear systems with records and data that are no longer relevant to the company and will not be of any use later. Storing a vast amount of customer Ids or customer information will lead to a bigger breach and a bigger ransom payment.

4. Understand and heed the evolving risks
Maintain an IT team that is up to date with the evolving risks and can be depended upon when facing a cyber issue. A team of dedicated employees who are capable of tackling all forms of threats includes people having a deep and complete knowledge about such issues. A lot of these threats have evolved over time and will keep on evolving over time, the IT team will have to keep up with with the evolution.

5. Cybersecure Company Culture
It is always better to be proactive than reactive. Ingrain cyber security in the company policy to let even new employees know what needs to be done in a case of a hijack. It is a proactive way to stay ahead of malicious content and make employees the gatekeepers of your company information. Develop a security protocol and make it a part and parcel of your orientation program.

Two step authentication, strong passwords, security questions, safe practices and regular verification will add another layer of protection for all of your company information.

If you or your company uses any other form of protection against cyber attacks let us know in the comments below. You can also write to us at [email protected]

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Mercedes Hits the Brakes on EVs: Profit Woes Lead to Focus on Gas-Powered Cars

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StartupStories - Mercedes

Luxury carmaker Mercedes-Benz is experiencing a shift in gears, prioritizing gasoline-powered vehicles over its previously ambitious electric vehicle (EV) strategy. This comes after disappointing sales figures and shrinking profit margins for their electric offerings.

The Dream Runs out of Charge:

Mercedes, a leader in the luxury car market, had set a goal to be fully electric by 2030. However, sluggish sales of their electric vehicles, particularly the high-end EQS and EQE sedans, have forced a recalibration of their plans. The company’s profit margin dipped to a concerning 9% in the first quarter of 2024, falling below their long-term target range.

Why the Slow Charge?

Several factors are contributing to the lackluster performance of Mercedes’ EVs:

  •  Price Point Pinch: The high price tag of Mercedes’ electric cars, ranging from $70,000 to $120,000, limits their appeal compared to more affordable electric options. 
  •  Competition Heats Up: Other luxury carmakers like Tesla and BMW are offering strong competition, with some even surpassing Mercedes in EV sales growth. 
  •  Infrastructure Concerns: Gaps in charging infrastructure and anxieties about range remain significant deterrents for potential EV buyers.

Back to the Drawing Board:

In response to these challenges, Mercedes CEO Ola Källenius announced a revised strategy. The company will:

  •  Extend Focus on Combustion Engines:  Production of gasoline-powered and hybrid vehicles will continue well into the 2030s, catering to customer demand.
  •  Rethink EV Strategy: Mercedes will analyze consumer preferences and market trends to refine their electric car offerings. This may involve focusing on more affordable models or improving features to enhance range and charging efficiency.

The Road Ahead

The shift by Mercedes highlights the complexities of the automotive industry’s transition to electric vehicles. It underscores the need for car manufacturers to balance ambitious environmental goals with the realities of consumer behavior and market competition.

Is this a Permanent Pause?

While Mercedes is putting the brakes on its all-electric vision, it doesn’t necessarily signal a complete retreat from EVs. The company may leverage this time to strengthen its electric offerings and ensure they are competitive in the rapidly evolving market. Only time will tell if Mercedes can reclaim its position as a leader in the electric vehicle race.

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Reddit Soars After Strong Earnings and Upbeat Outlook

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Reddit, the social media platform known for its online communities and meme culture, saw its stock price jump significantly after releasing its first earnings report since going public in March. Investors were impressed by the company’s strong financial performance and optimistic forecasts for the future.

The report highlighted a surge in user engagement, with daily active users increasing by 37% to 82.7 million in the first quarter. This growth was accompanied by an 8% rise in average revenue per user, indicating Reddit’s success in monetizing its platform. 

Perhaps the most significant factor driving the stock price increase was Reddit’s forecast for the second quarter. The company projected revenue to fall between $240 million and $255 million, exceeding analyst expectations. Additionally, Reddit anticipates achieving break-even status or even generating a profit, surpassing predictions of a loss.

This positive outlook can be attributed in part to Reddit’s flourishing advertising business. The company is also capitalizing on a new revenue stream: content licensing deals with artificial intelligence (AI) firms. Reddit’s vast collection of user-generated content provides valuable data for training AI models, attracting companies like Google.

Analysts believe Reddit is still in its early stages of monetization and predict continued growth in the coming quarters, fueled by advancements in ad targeting and measurement tools. This optimism is reflected in the stock price surge, which has climbed roughly 70% since Reddit’s IPO.

Overall, Reddit’s first earnings report paints a bright picture for the company’s future. With a thriving user base, increasing revenue opportunities, and a promising outlook, Reddit appears well-positioned for continued success in the ever-evolving social media landscape.

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Artificial Intelligence

The AI Video Revolution: How Sora is Reshaping Marketing

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Sora, an AI-powered video generation tool by OpenAI, has sent ripples of excitement through the marketing world. Its potential to create high-quality videos from simple descriptions is a game-changer, impacting how brands connect with audiences. 

Here’s how Sora is elevating engagement:

  • Hyper-realistic storytelling:  Sora can craft visually stunning videos in seconds. This lets marketers ditch expensive productions and create content that resonates deeply with viewers. Imagine a travel company whisking audiences away to exotic locales through captivating, AI-generated videos.
  • Personalized marketing on steroids:  Imagine video ads that speak directly to you, not a generic audience. Sora can personalize video content based on user data, creating a more impactful connection. A fitness app could use Sora to generate videos featuring exercises you enjoy, making the marketing message relevant and engaging.
  • Experimentation playground:  Sora empowers marketers to experiment freely.  Since creating video content becomes faster and cheaper, brands can test new concepts and narratives without breaking the bank. This fosters a culture of creativity and allows marketers to discover what truly clicks with their audience.

Of course, there are challenges. Integrating Sora seamlessly into existing workflows and maintaining the human touch in storytelling are aspects that require development. But Sora’s potential to revolutionize marketing by creating  engaging, personalized content at scale is undeniable.

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