Top Tips to Guard Against Cyber Crime
DON’T CLICK THAT LINK
Social Engineering and Phishing, or “Hacking the Human”, this is highly effective and easier than hacking a system. STOP & think before you click and NEVER share social security numbers, bank information, or account information and passwords. Watch for emails with generic greetings, email addresses that do not match known company website addresses, and bad grammar or spelling. Avoid using company computers or devices to surf the net as this opens your employer to cyber risk as well.
Install updates for OS and applications, and anti-virus signatures. Software is buggy, and hackers find ways into computers through these bugs. Developers are constantly racing to patch these cyber holes. Hackers will exploit known issues in your computers, tablets, and phones. Patching is ABSOLUTELY necessary, you need to install updates when available. If you worry about patch issues, wait a week but not a month or a year.
USE BETTER PASSWORDS
Use LONG passwords with letters, numbers and special characters. It’s recommended that different passwords are used for every account, but at a minimum… do not use the same passwords at work that you use for your personal accounts. And NEVER share your passwords with anyone.
PROTECT YOURSELF ON PUBLIC WI-FI
Public Wi-Fi is unsafe and DIRTY. Treat coffee shops, hotel and airport Wi-Fi as you would a public restroom. It’s that bad. Use a good Virtual Private Network (VPN) application on your laptops, tablets and phones.
Be careful of what you post on social media. Don’t publicly share a message that you will be out of the country for three weeks, and DO NOT SHARE your home addresses publicly either. Make sure privacy settings are set to only share with people that you know and trust. You can share pictures with larger audiences when you return from your trip.
CHECK YOUR CREDIT
Check your credit annually to make sure you KNOW what accounts are open and reported balances match your records. It’s free and easy, but only use reputable sources like www.ftc.gov site from the federal government to do so.