Cyber fatigue – What it is and how to overcome it

Ever heard of cyber fatigue? Even if you haven’t, you might have experienced it. Here we take a look at what cyber fatigue actually is and the things you can do to fight off the symptoms to keep yourself safe.

What is cyber fatigue?

Cyber fatigue is the feeling of being overwhelmed by and tired of the barrage of cyber security warnings, advice on how to stay safe and need to be constantly alert.

As cyber-attacks against companies increase, especially for those holding customer data, the same recommendations are made for staying protected against a threat – most of all change your passwords and make them more complex. On average, people in the UK have 22 separate passwords (NCSC), which means lots of different passwords to remember and keep up with. The resulting cyber fatigue leads to people ignoring warnings altogether and becoming desensitised to the threat of hackers and cyber-criminals.

How to tackle cyber fatigue

It’s important that you don’t fall prey to cyber fatigue, as it can compromise your online safety and leave your vulnerable to an attack.

Here is how you can overcome cyber fatigue and ensure you’re protected against the criminals:

  • Use a password manager – We’re constantly told we should change our passwords regularly and make sure we don’t use the same one for all of our accounts. However, the reality of doing this can be confusing and time consuming, causing you to shut off to password safety messages. However, changing your passwords doesn’t have to be difficult; make it easier for yourself by using a password manager, which helps you to store and organise your passwords in a secure way by encrypting them. They have a variety of security measure in place to ensure your data is kept safe and they’re available on most browsers and operating systems.
  • Automate your updates – Software and app updates are key to keeping your computer and devices protected against the latest malware and viruses. Constant notifications and reminders from the host of apps and software you have can cause cyber fatigue and avoidance. The best way to prevent this but also keep your devices protected is to set up an automatic update. Plus, you’ll also receive less notifications.
  • Automate your virus scan – For the same reasons you need to update your software and apps, you’ll want to schedule automatic virus scans on your computer. You can set it up to scan every week or every month, meaning you won’t forget and you won’t have to try remember the last time you did one.
  • Close accounts you don’t use, such as email accounts from your teens or apps you’ve not touched for ages. Think about all those accounts that hold your personal details: this makes you vulnerable. Remember that MySpace account you once used? Yeah, you might want to shut it down if you can’t remember the last time you logged in.

Luckily you can beat cyber fatigue just by taking a few steps to automate and organise the basic security tasks you need to complete. The benefits of doing this far outweigh the one-off time-drain of putting these measures in please. After all, it’s far more tiring dealing with fraud then it is to protect against it.