Cyber hygiene: Tips to keep your devices and data safe
With the increasing prevalence of cyber attacks, it is important for individuals and organizations to maintain good cyber hygiene practices. This involves ensuring that all devices and data are kept safe and secure from potential threats. Here are some tips to keep your devices and data safe:
Taking care of Passwords
Passwords are one of the fundamental ways to keep our online identity safe. Unfortunately, despite their importance, many people tend to reuse passwords, making it easier for hackers to gain access to multiple accounts. Cyber criminals can use automated tools to steal passwords.
To avoid this threat, it is recommended that you use complex passwords that are unique to each account. Use a password manager tool to create and store your passwords safely. Password managers generate complex passwords, store them securely, and automatically fill in the password field when required.
Data encryption is a process of converting plain text data into a more secure form. Using encryption technology allows data to be transmitted, stored, and processed securely. There are several encryption tools available, such as VeraCrypt, BitLocker, and FileVault, that you can use to encrypt your hard drive, USB drives, and even email messages.
Installing Antivirus software
Antivirus software is an essential tool for protecting your computer from malware, viruses, and other malicious software. Antivirus software scans the computer regularly to detect and remove any potential threats. Several leading antivirus software such as Norton, McAfee, and Kaspersky provide complete protection against malware.
Keeping Software Updated
Software updates are important because they often include security fixes and patches that fix known vulnerabilities. Updating your devices, software and applications on time ensures that you are protected against any potential threats. You should enable automatic updates on your devices whenever possible to ensure you have the latest security software installed.
Securing your Network
Securing your network is critical to keeping your devices safe. Standard practices such as hiding network names and applying passwords to prevent unauthorized access. By creating a strong password, one can prevent unauthorized access.
Regular Backup of Data
The backup of important data is one of the essential preventive measures against data loss from a cyber attack. A backup is a copy of your essential data on an external device. By making backups, you ensure that your important information is always safe and available when needed. Cloud storage solutions such as Google Drive, Dropbox, and OneDrive offer an easy way to back up your data to the cloud.
Limitations on sharing personal information on Social Media
Hackers exploit personal information and can use it to impersonate someone else. Social media platforms have become the breeding ground for identity theft as people tend to blindly share their personal information. It is important to be cautious when sharing personal information online. Limiting the sharing of personal information on social media is a crucial preventative measure against identity theft and online fraud.
Usage of Two-factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a way to verify your identity when logging into an account. It involves using two separate methods of authentication, namely a password and a one-time code that is sent to your phone or email. This adds an extra layer of security, making it more difficult for cyber criminals to gain access to your account. Many social media platforms, banking websites, and email services offer 2FA as an option.
Phishing emails are a kind of cyber attack where cyber criminals try to obtain sensitive data such as login credentials, personal information, and financial details by impersonating a legitimate source. These emails are designed to look authentic, and often contain links to fake websites and password-protected attachments. Always be wary of suspicious emails and never click on links or download attachments from unknown sources.
Avoiding Public Wi-Fi
Public Wi-Fi can be a serious threat to your device’s security. Hackers often set up fake public Wi-Fi networks to steal personal information from unsuspecting users. It is recommended to avoid using public Wi-Fi to connect to sensitive accounts like internet banking, or use a VPNs service that encrypts your data.
Keeping your devices and data safe is an essential concern for anyone using technology. With the increasing prevalence of cyber attacks, it is important to maintain fundamental cyber hygiene practices such as using strong and unique passwords, backing up data, installing antivirus software, and updated software regularly. By following these basic security measures, you can protect yourself and your data from online threats.