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When it comes to hacking, cybercriminals have a variety of approaches. This is why thinking like an attacker is one of the most effective ways you can plan for a cyber attack. Here’s how to do it.

1. Research attackers’ typical MO (method of operation.)

In order to start thinking like an attacker, Greg Norcie with the Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT) suggests you determine what potential attackers’ motivationsresources, and methods are. Once you’ve pinpointed these factors, you can begin to develop a solid defense strategy.

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” 

― Sun Tzu, The Art of War

2. Figure out what would frustrate an attacker and do that.

According to self-defense experts, one of the most effective ways to avoid a physical attack is to appear tough. “People trying to attack or rob you generally are not looking for a lengthy encounter or a problem,” says Reader’s Digest writer Marissa Laliberte.“They want an easy target.”

The same concept applies to a cyber attack. Cybercriminals get frustrated by good cybersecurity. If a hacker has to wade through multiple layers of security in order to get into your system or steal information, there’s a chance they’ll give up on you and pursue an easier target.

3. Anticipate an attacker’s moves and be proactive in your defense.

It’s not necessarily a waste of time to try to figure out who is attacking you, but you’ll always be one step behind your attackers if that’s all you do. Try to take a proactive approach by looking at potential threats and stay up-to-date on the latest trends in hacking technology. Thinking like an attacker means anticipating what they are going to try next, not just preparing for what they’ve already tried.

Thinking like an attacker is not a foolproof cybersecurity strategy. However, staying one step ahead of cybercriminals and thinking like them is one of the best ways to combat cyber attacks.

If you’re interested in talking with a security expert about applying the above principles to your security plan, contact the Bytesize team today!

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