All the people whose jobs include opening the attachments from unknown sources are the lovable targets of cybercriminals. For example – Freelancers who need to interact with a number of people even strangers. Undoubtedly, they have to accept and open the variety of data, be it a technical document for any project, simple text, description for an image, etc. This is what makes the freelancers the main target for all sorts of cybercriminals.
The Malevolent Task
Recently, ESET Technical Support researchers executed a survey accounting the people on sites for freelancers like freelancer.com and Fiverr. The experts founded that cybercriminals perform the attacks through fooling the people registered on such websites. They say that there is a job opportunity for details of which the interested ones have to open the attachment. Moreover, as the attached file is in the .doc format rather than being executable, a lot of persons get convinced to open them and this could be very dangerous.
If the users (intentionally or unintentionally) open the files with hidden malware, undoubtedly, the things with their Microsoft Office will go wrong.
What actually happens? As soon as the user opens up a malicious file, he/she will be asked to allow macros. Once the user agrees, a RAT (Remote Access Trojan) or a keylogger get installed on his/her PC. This, in turn, let the crooks to see each and everything you provide your keyboard or mouse. For instance: your login details, passwords, & more that aid them to steal your financial assets and other credential data.
However, being the freelancer is advantageous but we can’t ignore the drawbacks. Yep! With the growing interest of cybercriminals to target the people in this field, freelancing is turning somewhat unbearable. Hence, let’s find out ‘what to do to prevent yourself from being a freelancer who is victim to cyber-attack’.
Security Tips for Freelancers
The below tips by ESET Customer Support mavens are the tested safety measures that have been benefiting a lot of freelancers. So, why and what to wait for now? Be familiar with the precautionary measures and flourish as a safe freelancer.
- Don’t Install any application or software that potential clients ask you to get instead if needed download the same from the official website. With it, ensure that the app you are about to have doesn’t allow the client to access your PC.
- Don’t Open any executable file such as .exe. Probably, they can be malicious. However, if due to some kind of urgency you have to do that, ensure to check the specific files with an up-to-date antivirus.
- Don’t Enable macros in MS Office’s programs like Microsoft Excel Spreadsheets, Word Documents, PowerPoint Presentations, etc. Taking advantage of macros – the hidden executables, hackers make attempts to fool the users by providing innocent-looking documents that contain malware.
- Don’t Fall Victim to phishing attacks. Certainly, crooks are eagerly interested in accessing the accounts on the sites that serve freelancers. This is due to the financial benefits that the hackers can attain by stealing the money users have earned by freelancing. Accessing your accounts on these websites, the cybercriminals may also damage your online reputation. Therefore, look for the misspelled URLs or sites that ask to provide your credentials.
- Don’t Share photos of the documents holding your personal details like Aadhar card number, credit/ debit card number. With it, never disclose the info such as CVV/CVC code or the expiry date given on your card. If you need to share your banking information for enabling someone to pay you, it is better to use the encrypted channels.
- Don’t rely on outdated antivirus or security software. As the malware the cybercriminals use to attack the digital world is advancing day by day, there is a need to have up-to-date antivirus software on your devices. A robust and updated ESET Antivirus or Internet Security software will keep you safe from numerous threats, spam and phishing dangers.
Conclusion: Apply the above tips and have a safer and long-lasting experience of freelancing. If need any help, get it from ESET Support experts.
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