Cybersecurity Tips Blog

Two-step verification is one of the best steps you can take to secure any account. Two-step verification is when you require both a password and code sent to or generated by your mobile device. Examples of services that support two-step verification include Gmail, Dropbox and Twitter.

Never give your password to someone over the phone. If someone calls you and asks for your password while saying they are from the Help Desk or Tech Support team, it is an attacker attempting to gain access to your account.

Several years ago, creating a cybersecure home was simple; most homes consisted of nothing more than a wireless network and several computers. Today, technology has become far more complex and is integrated into every part of our lives, from mobile devices and gaming consoles to your home thermostat and your refrigerator. Here are four simple steps for creating a cybersecure home.

Change the default administrator password to your Internet router or wireless access point.

Ensure that only people you trust can connect to your wireless network. 

Ensure the password used to connect to your wireless network is strong and that it is different from the admin password. 

Many wireless networks support what is called a Guest Network. This allows visitors to connect to the Internet, but protects your home network, as they cannot connect to any of the other devices on your home network. If you add a guest network, be sure to enable WPA2 and a unique password for the network.

It may surprise you to know that the biggest risk to your mobile device is not hackers, but most likely you. You are far more likely to lose or forget a mobile device then have someone hack into it. The number one thing you should do to protect your devices is enable automatic locking of the screen, often called a screen lock. This means every time you want to use your device you first have to unlock the screen, such as with a strong passcode or your fingerprint. This helps ensure that no one can access your device if it is lost or stolen. 

Malware is software--a computer program--used to perform malicious actions. In fact, the term malware is a combination of the words malicious and software. Cyber criminals install malware on your computers or devices to gain control over them or gain access to what they contain. Once installed, these attackers can use malware to spy on your online activities, steal your passwords and files, or use your system to attack others.

Leaving your seat? Ctrl--Alt--Delete! Make sure you lock your workstation or laptop while you are away from it. On a Mac? Try Control--Shift--Eject/Power.

When you forward an email to others or copy new people to an email thread, review all the content in the entire email and make sure the information contained in it is suitable for everyone. It is very easy to forward emails to others, not realizing there is highly sensitive information in the bottom of the email that people should not have access to.

Privacy settings on social networks have limited value. They are confusing to configure and change often. Ultimately, if you do not want your parents or boss reading it, do not post it.

Passphrases are the strongest type of passwords and the easiest to remember. Simply use an entire sentence for your password, such as "What time is coffee?" By using spaces and punctuation, you create a long password that is hard to guess but easy to remember.

Keep in mind that digital data is not the only thing that needs to be protected. Paper documents also need to be protected. When disposing of any confidential documents, make sure they are shredded first or disposed of in bins for shredding. Also, be sure to lock up any sensitive documents before you go home at the end of the day.

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