We’ve seen it happen to big brands like Target and Sony, but we never expect our “smaller” brands to one day wake up and realize our most important documents, information, appointments could be wiped out in an instant. Unfortunately, this expectation is one of the major reasons companies set themselves up to be hacked, without even knowing. That’s why they say prevention is key. With your health, your car, financial data apps, and especially with your digital life, the security and level of health is in your hands.
Logout of important accounts
While it’s in good practice to make it habit of logging out of your accounts each time, we all know having to resubmit our Facebook login every time is time-wasting and useless. But for your more important accounts, such as your online banking, anything containing sensitive or confidential business information (Dropbox, email accounts, etc) you should definitely make it a habit to logout each time. Also, for preventative measures, you should ALWAYS logout of your computer daily, especially if it’s a public computer. And no, putting it on sleep mode does not count as logging out.
Software is always being updated in hopes to fix issues users face when using them. Hence the importance of staying on top of your updates to ensure there aren’t any bugs lingering around your computer. It’s also important to remember that some of your applications and softwares sync in order to work together so be sure to complete each update to ensure they all work and communicate properly to prevent any other vulnerabilities from arising.
Protect your passwords
In this day in age, this should be common sense by now. But it’s still worth mentioning since this is one of the most common ways individuals information gets compromised by hackers. As our password requirements become increasingly advanced, so do the hacker’s ability in trying to decode your uber advanced password. Even little things like never using the same password twice, and avoiding common terms, names or personal information that can be easily found elsewhere online (like your birthday or sister, brother or dogs name). It’s also good practice to keep your passwords updated often as possible to add an extra layer of security.
Be aware of the unknown
Things public wifi, unknown email addresses, unexpected money requests or odd looking links should all be taken with extreme caution. Never click on links that you don’t recognize, even more so if they are from email accounts you’ve never seen. When using public wifi, try to avoid working on sensitive documents or projects that can be wiped out with a bad connection or end up in the wrong hands.
One extra take away …
While we are always quick to blame outside sources for these brute force attacks against us, at the end of the day we only have ourselves to blame for not taking the necessary prevention to keep our computers and softwares safe and secure. Stay proactive by implementing these tips and taking measures in your own hands.