The rise of technology has undoubtedly made life easier for everyone. Unfortunately, it has also given rise to new cybersecurity threats and scams. In recent years, cybercrime is growing in sophistication. It’s becoming increasingly challenging for consumers to protect themselves from fraudsters. As we move into 2023 and beyond, here are some of the emerging cybersecurity trends that consumers should be aware of to stay safe online.

According to one cybersecurity report, identity theft has almost tripped over the last few years. Cybercriminals are always looking for new ways to exploit vulnerabilities in computer systems, software, and networks. Their goal is to steal your data or money. Technology advances may change, but this goal will remain the same. We all know it’s important to ensure businesses have cybersecurity systems in place. However, it’s equally important to ensure your personal devices are safe as well. 

As technology improves, we must consider how cybersecurity threats also evolve over time. Technology advancements have brought about new cybersecurity risks we’ve never seen before. These same advancements have also brought forth new securities as well.   

In today’s computer-era, it is essential to keep up with the latest cybersecurity trends, threats, and attack techniques. That’s the only way to stay ahead of cybercriminals. This requires ongoing education and training for not just organizations and IT professionals, but for the average person as well. Here’s what cyber security risks are on the rise, and which emerging tools can best help protect you.  

Phishing scams on the rise:

Phishing scams remain one of the most common and dangerous cyber threats that consumers face. 

One finance tech business explains that phishing scams come in several forms, but that in all cases, a person, “will pretend to be a legitimate company, and encourage you to open a link, call a number, or download a file”. In any of these cases, they try to collect and steal your personal information. Their download may corrupt your device with spyware. Their link or phone number could encourage you to provide your information over a website or phone call to the scammer. 

Fraudsters send out fake emails or texts that look like they come from legitimate sources, such as banks, online shopping sites, or even the government. 

How to protect yourself from phishing scams

To protect against phishing scams, consumers should be wary of every communication they receive. They should avoid clicking on links or opening attachments from unknown sources, especially if they’re sent a link or file they didn’t request.

If you receive communication from one of your providers, asking you to visit their website or call, remember you don’t have to use the link or number provided. It’s always a good idea to close out of the email, search your provider online, and use their official website or phone number to complete the request. 

Last but not least, you’ll want to make sure your devices have up-to-date antivirus software. This software can help detect and remove malicious programs.

Evolving ransomware attacks:

Ransomware attacks are becoming more frequent. They can cause significant damage to individuals and businesses. In a ransomware attack, cybercriminals infect a victim's computer with malware that encrypts their files, making them inaccessible. The attackers then demand a ransom payment in exchange for the decryption key.

Even if they’re paid, there is no guarantee they’ll release the information. Worse, they may release the files corrupted with spyware or malware. They may encrypt the files again in the future, asking for an even larger ransom. 

Ransomware has been around for decades. However, recent changes have paired the threat of data loss together with the threat of leaking information. Groups of bad actors have created websites where they threaten to leak the private information of their victims. This exposes victims not only to a loss of their files, but a possible leak of their personal information as well. 

This is one cybersecurity threat that has only continued to increase its destructive capabilities. 

How to protect yourself from ransomware 

To protect against ransomware attacks, consumers should regularly back up their data to an external drive or cloud storage service. It’s hard to ask for ransom when the owner of the data already has a secure copy of it. 

To avoid ransomware, people should also be cautious when downloading attachments or clicking on links from unknown sources. Always good to ensure that their operating system and software are up to date.

Internet of Things becoming a major risk:

We all love our smart devices, but these pieces of technology come with major security risks. 

The collection of smart TVs, smartwatches, smart appliances, and more are examples of devices referred to as the Internet of Things (IoT). These devices do not have the same level of security as a traditional computer.

One of the biggest risks is that many IoT devices do not encrypt the data they’re sending back and forth over the network. It’s easy for a person to steal sensitive information being shared across these devices. 

Secure your IoT devices

The University of California advises securing your IoT devices. Here are a list of steps they recommend following when you set up your smart devices: 

  • Only use smart devices that allow you to set a new password, then set a new password different than the default manufacturer password. 
  • If devices allow for multi-factor authentication, take advantage of it. 
  • Update your devices as new software releases. When developers find a hole in their product’s security, patches are usually sent out over software updates. 
  • Secure your router and home Wi-Fi. You may even consider having a separate Wi-Fi just for your IoT devices. 

Cybersecurity is changing 

As always, is crucial to implement effective cybersecurity measures such as firewalls, anti-virus software, intrusion detection systems, and encryption to protect sensitive data and networks. Sometimes, the tried and true forms of security work. 

Cybercriminals are increasingly using social engineering tactics to trick users into divulging sensitive information or clicking on malicious links. They also use techniques such as ransomware, where they encrypt a victim's data and demand a ransom to release it. the rise of the Internet of Things (IoT) has created a new range of potential vulnerabilities, such as devices that may have weak or no security controls and can be hacked remotely.

Cybersecurity professionals and regular individuals must both be constantly learning and adapting to stay ahead of cyber threats. This requires ongoing education, training, and the development of new cybersecurity tools and techniques to protect against emerging threats. Furthermore, organizations must be vigilant and regularly update their cybersecurity measures to keep up with the latest threats and vulnerabilities.


Cybersecurity threats and scams are becoming increasingly sophisticated. Consumers must remain vigilant to protect their personal and financial information online. By following best practices such as avoiding phishing scams, backing up data, and enabling multi-factor authentication, consumers can reduce their risk of falling victim to cybercrime.

In summary, it is critical to recognize that as technology evolves, so do the cybersecurity threats. It is essential to stay vigilant, keep learning, and always be prepared to mitigate those risks.