How Cyber Aware are you? The month of October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month. 20 years ago, our company would spent hours explaining and convincing clients about the benefits of why they should “connect” their business to the internet. Today it seems just about every electronic device in our homes are “connected” to the internet. This group of devices includes refrigerators, robotic vacuum cleaners, thermostats, TV’s, personal assistants and on and on. This group of devices aren’t simply computers that are part of the internet. This Internet of Things is a really powerful and valuable part of many of our everyday lives. From adjusting the temperature at your house before you get home, to controlling lights and even opening doors to allow deliveries to be placed inside your front door.
Each of us have these devices do have a responsibility to ourselves, our family and our community. This article will provide some basic yet very powerful steps we can take today, to help prevent problems in the future. There are also valuable links throughout this article to wonderful resources. If you own a business and you currently do not have a security plan in place for your customers, please reach out to us. Red 3 Media can help you prepare your business, protect against loss and help reduce liability issues by avoiding negligence.
Number 1 – Generate RANDOM passwords
We can’t stress enough how important it is you choose random passwords. We have had clients use this same password or variations of their password for years. Sadly their account was hacked. There are password generators you can use or download, or you can create your own. Some advice in the past was to use a combination of letters, numbers and symbols to make the password more difficult to hack. This isn’t really true, just make sure its as long as possible (within reason!). Generally speaking the longer the password phrase, the more difficult it will be for a computer hacker to figure out. If you want to know how difficult, view this.
Carefully Review Emails
When you receive emails first make sure they are arriving from a trusted company or person. Carefully look at emails you are not familiar with and NEVER click on links in an email, or download and open attachments from a sender you do not know. Email is the gateway to our online life. If a hacker gets access into your email they can go to other sites and request new passwords and use your email account to verify these new passwords.
Protect Your Financial Accounts
Someone hacking in and sending spam from your account could be disturbing. In most cases it’s annoying and slightly embarrassing. If someone gains access to your financial accounts and wipes out bank accounts, you could be out all your hard earned savings. Safeguard your accounts by frequently changing your passwords for your financial accounts.
Online Security For Your Business
If you are a business owner and you have a website, you need to take security very seriously. What kind of information do you collect online from your clients and prospects? How do you secure this information. Is it encrypted and securely stored? With the recent GDPR initiatives and recent hack of facebook, its more urgent than ever to make sure your business is doing what it can to keep up with regulations, and more importantly protect your customers private information. If you would like a few review of your website and online portals, complete this form for a free analysis.