One of our jobs as your IT partner is to keep security in the forefront of our minds. So this week we’re sharing more tips that can help safeguard your safety and that of those you care about. Since more and more of us are spending increased hours online, it’s never a bad idea to be reminded of little activities that can make a big difference to prevent becoming a victim.
Tip #1: Clean up your act (um…apps)
Here’s an old school spring cleaning tip that applies to your technology as well: if you haven’t used it in the past 6 months, get rid of it. There are many reasons for this, not the least of which is leaving a door open for ransomware since it’s likely that old apps and software aren’t getting updates. Do a quick visual scan of your computer’s apps every few months–it takes a lot less time than you think.
Tip #2: Likewise, clean up your digital footprint
First, make a list of all of your online accounts. Then set strong passwords for all of them (and you guessed right–don’t use the same password for different accounts). Finally, delete the accounts you haven’t used in the past 6 months.
Tip #3: Stick to your own devices, especially if you are transmitting data
Sure, you may need to use someone else’s phone to find a number and make a call, or you maybe a friend’s computer to find a new restaurant. You can never know if someone else’s device is infected with malware, has a keylogger (which tracks and stores everything you type on the keyboard), or is simply unsafe. Each time you submit any information through a device that isn’t yours, you run the risk of your data falling into the wrong hands. Remember that you can only control the technology that you control. It’s always safe to wait even if it’s inconvenient.
Tip #4: Paranoia can be good for you
It’s okay to be (a little) paranoid, particularly as you traverse the immeasurable universe of the internet, communications, and everyone who interacts with you. One of the most commonly repeated saying in security precautions is “If it seems to good to be true, it probably is.” And then there’s the golden rule that everyone should abide by: Never ever give your confidential data to anyone unless you know and trust them.
Tip #5: Consider ulterior motives as you bump into people online
LinkedIn recruiter or attacker in disguise? New Facebook friend sharing a resource or sending ransomware? Cyber criminals often create fake social media profiles to gain access to details about you that they can use later. They collect data about your background, job, connections, etc and use these to details to gain your trust. Remember that all the information you enjoy access to online is also available to thieves and malicious attackers. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t expand your network, but it’s good practice to at least scan their profiles before accepting a connection. Keep watch for:
- Too little or generic information
- Pictures that look like stock photography
- Very few connections
- All of their interactions happened on the same day or in the same window of time
More tips will keep trickling in. If you have any questions regarding your work devices or how we keep your network, data, and users safe, please feel free to contact us anytime at Help@HDCav.com or 360-930-6991.