We’re over a week into 2016 and no doubt you’ve got one or two New Year’s resolutions. Doing more exercise and cutting down on various vices are common but what about changing your passwords or checking your social media privacy settings?
Tis the season to make promises to yourself about how you’re going to improve over the coming months, why not throw a few tech and security related resolutions in the mix?
Here are five simple ways you can improve your personal online security and by extension the security of the company you work for and the people you connect with.
- Change up those passwords! If an online account contains your personal information, particularly and bank or payment information, it should have a unique, complex password protecting it.
- Consider using a password manager. To aid with the above you might want to consider using a password manager. Password managers essentially act as a secure vault in which you store your usernames and passwords for any number of websites, online portals or other programs. Many password managers will even create random, unique, complex passwords on your behalf.
- Use Two-factor Authentication wherever possible. Many online services and websites offer 2FA in some form, be it a mobile app, email authentication or a code sent by text. All three of the above can and should certainly be incorporated into your business/company. Let’s face it you don’t want to be the company that got “hacked” because someone figured out your admin password is password123.
- Check your social media privacy settings. Whether you’re an avid social media user or not it’s most likely worth checking over your privacy settings on Facebook and Twitter, for example. Nowadays we post a huge amount of our personal information in status updates and profile bios, but do you really know who is able to view it? If the answer is no, which it probably is, then check those settings and perhaps don’t post that you’re going to be away from your house for two weeks.
- Double, triple check emails. Emails containing dodgy links or attachments are still a very large attack vector, particularly for businesses. General phishing, more targeted spear phishing and many social media techniques involve email. The key is to check: check with the supposed sender if it’s an internal email, check with your bank directly if it’s from your bank. Check, check and check again before clicking or downloading anything!
There are of course many more possible examples but these five are a great place to start. Once your fundamental security principles are in place you’ll more often than not be able to repel all but the most determined or crafty online criminal.
If we can help with any security or support questions please let us know.
Happy New Year.