Today is the day to embrace Thomas Jefferson’s famous saying, “Don’t put off what you can do today for tomorrow.”
The issue of cyber security, one of the hottest topics in our modern world, has become personal. It’s necessary to protect ourselves and our families from hackers, cyber criminals, predators and scammers. Consider it good “hygiene” of the digital age.
Don’t put off protecting yourself or be complacent about cyber security. Here are simple measures to implement cyber safety today.
Simple Steps for
Personal Cyber Security:
Get a Password Manager. Gone are the days of trying to remember passwords or coming up with strong ones— a password manager creates unbreakable and safely encrypted passwords. You only need to remember one password to access the rest. PC Magazine recommends the following password managers in 2017: LastPass 4.0, LogMeOnce, Dashlane 4 and Sticky Password Premium.
Tape Over Your Webcam. There’s no reason not to, even Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg does it. If your webcam is left uncovered, a hacker could be spying on you right now and you’d never know it.
Download Signal. Considered an end-to-end encrypted messaging app by security experts, Signal has become the go-to app for private conversations. In the days following the election last year, the app saw a massive surge in downloads for its ability to assure users that messages aren’t seen by anyone except intended recipients.
Update Your Web Browser. Surfing the web without an updated browser is like swimming with sharks. It’s not really a matter of if, but when, a cybercriminal will spot you floundering without a cage and attack. Web browsers often have security updates. To make sure you’re using the latest version, visit the homepage of the browser.
Use Antivirus Software.
A firewall acts like a traffic cop, directing cars at an intersection. It enforces security by preventing unauthorized or potentially dangerous internet-based materials from getting to your computer. Antivirus software detects these kinds of malicious materials. Another option is a security suite—a one-stop solution that typically includes antivirus, firewall, anti spam, parental control, and some sort of additional privacy protection, such as protection against phishing sites. See PCMag.com for recommendations.
Be Cautious With Public Wi-Fi. Never use your credit card information for online shopping or access sensitive online activities, like your bank, on a public wi-fi network.
Guard Your Physical Devices. While you can do a lot to prevent a hacker from remotely accessing your devices, a criminal will have an easier time extracting or corrupting information if your physical device gets into their hands. So, don’t leave your phone or laptop unattended in public places.
Justin Lavelle is Communications Director at BeenVerified (beenverified.com).