What are you doing to stay safe online? Here are some tips on ways to limit your risk and vulnerabilities.
What’s a clean computer?
- Be sure to make sure that you’re using a computer that has up-to-date security software, web browsers, and operating systems. Maintaining up-to-date systems establishes a strong first line of defense against things such as viruses, malware, and hackers. An easy way to do this is to allow the automatic software updates help you stay as current as possible.
- When you are connecting smartphones, gaming systems, USBs and other external devices be sure to do a security scan.
How can you protect yourself?
- Make sure to use layers of security. Many sites, applications, and websites will allow for multiple levels of verification. The extra seconds to type in your “first pet’s name” is well worth the extra security.
- Be sure to use a unique account and a unique password. The greater the diversification and length of the password the less risk of it being hacked. If you’re like me and have such an intense password even you can’t remember it, I recommend a website called www.passpack.com.
- Have back-ups of all of your critical information.
- Make sure to limit the amount of personal information you’re putting on the internet. If everyone has access to your “first pet’s name” it’s probably not the best security question.
How can you think before you connect?
- Don’t click on suspicious links, when in doubt, throw it out. These links are often generated by cyber criminals trying to access your network.
- Be aware of which wi-fi hotspots you’re connecting to. Hotspots create network access trails that can make your device(s) vulnerable. Having updated security settings can help to minimize the threat.
- When you’re online shopping or banking look for websites that start with “shttp://” these sites have extra security measures for protection.
What can you do to look out for your community?
- The more you do to limit your own vulnerabilities the more you do to protect your community from being vulnerable. Think herd immunity but for computers.
- Don’t post information about people without their consent or say anything you wouldn’t want to be said about you.
- Report any suspicious activity or any stolen finances or identities.