In many ways, modern technology has simplified our lives. We use it to accomplish easy tasks like banking and shopping on a daily basis. More importantly, modern technology has increased human capabilities over the years. However, with all this accessibility comes great risk.
Gone are the days when people used the Internet to pay bills and check emails without fear. Every time you connect to the Internet you become vulnerable to cyber attacks. In order to avoid being hacked, follow these easy tips:
Do not give personal information
While may seem like a no-brainer, it’s very important not to give your personal information to anyone you do not know. This includes over the phone and in an email. If someone contacts you claiming to be a retailer or collection agency, do not give him or her your personal information. Always ask for a name and callback number if you are even remotely suspicious. And remember, just because someone has some of your personal information that does not mean they are legit!
Set secure passwords
For nearly every account you create online, you are required to create a password. The key is to create a secure password that people are unlikely to figure out. We feel that the best approach to creating a secure password is to choose one that has letter and number combinations. Also, the longer the password the more likely it is to be secure. Using punctuation and symbols can also make your password even harder to decipher. After your passwords are created, write them down and do not share them with anyone.
Keep antivirus up to date
Installing an antivirus software program and keeping it up to date is critical for protecting your computer. There are many types of antivirus software available today that look for malware. Because new malware is discovered daily, it’s important to update your software regularly. Many antivirus programs offer automatic updating; all you have to do is enable the feature so that your software always has the most current signatures.
Connect to a secure network
In today’s Wi-Fi friendly world, it’s more important than ever to connect to a secure network. When you connect through a public Wi-Fi network, you are susceptible to being hacked. Reason being, anyone using the same Wi-Fi can monitor the information passing between your computer and the network if your connection is not encrypted. You should always avoid doing banking over public networks.
Use email wisely
Many people use email to keep in touch with friends and family. Email is also an important business tool. However, even if you have good security software on your computer, that doesn’t mean your friends and business partners have the same protection. Be extremely careful about what you share via email. For instance, never send personal information, such as your credit card or Social Security number, to another person through email. Instead, use the phone to share this private information.
By now you’ve heard all of the general recommendations for counteracting cyber attacks, including not giving out personal information, implementing secure passwords, using anti-virus software, connecting to secure networks, and being extra careful with email. We hope you can follow these network security suggestions.
Dan is the Chief Information Technology Architect at Kincaid Network Solutions. Connect with him on Google+.