As we keep incorporating technology into our lifestyle more and more every day, we have to start addressing the security issues it brings along with it. This is especially important now that cybercriminals have become reckless on their quest to create damage and extort money and information from all of us.
If you don’t have a technical background, this may sound complicated for you. You have to trust us when we tell you that you can do a few simple things to increase your tech security. In this post we are going to stick to the basics everyone should follow. So let’s get going, because you may already be a target of a cyber attack.
Enable 2FA Everywhere You Can
2FA stands for two-factor authentication. This security method is very commonly used by the majority of the world’s largest online service providers. Even the largest gaming companies use it to enable the players to protect their online valuables – characters, items, in-game gold, and so on.
This extra layer of security works really well. Beside your passwords, when you want to log in you will either have to enter the code you received via SMS or a code from a 2FA code generator attached to your account.
If you don’t want to enable it on all your online accounts, you should at least consider enabling it on your online email account, credit card account and social media.
Make Sure your Mobile Devices Are Locked
Maybe you have never given it a thought before, but your mobile devices contain a lot of valuable and highly personal information. In some instances, they also contain your credit card information. This is why you have to do all in your power to protect this data.
Fortunately the modern smartphones have multiple security layers which you can enable to lock them – patterns, passwords, fingerprint scanners and facial recognition. Make sure to enable at least one of these and keep your phone locked whenever you are not using it.
When it comes to laptops, you can go tech savvy mode and enable your BIOS password, but the more convenient and less demanding method is to use a login password for the login session. Make sure that you password is long and strong. What is a strong password? The one that is at least 8 characters long and contains UpperCase letter sequence, numbers and special characters such as !$%.
Use Specialized Software
Even that the threats are real, people are still not using antivirus and firewall software, at least not in satisfying numbers. The main excuse is that this software is too expensive to be put on all devices. First of all, it’s not expensive, it’s free. And second, you can install it and use it even if you know nothing about cyber security.
The majority of the best antivirus and firewall software companies offer free versions of their solutions. While these tools lack the functionality the paid ones have, they can still protect you from getting infected. The best thing is that you will be able to install them on all your desktop and mobile devices without having to pay a single dollar.
Don’t Use Public Networks
Public networks are patient zero of many cyber infestations. This is why you should be really concerned about your security if you regularly use them. It would be the best if you could stay away from them altogether. In some instances you won’t be able to, and this is what you should do instead:
* Use a VPN – virtual private networks can help you enjoy safe Internet browsing even when you’ve accessed it via the most vulnerable public network in the world.
* Turn off sharing – make sure to go Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network and Sharing Center > Choose Change Advanced Sharing. In this panel, you want to turn off public folder sharing, and more importantly, network discovery.
Bonus tip: Make sure your WiFi is turned off whenever you are not using it. This way you will minimise the risk of your devices getting online and being exposed to threats when you are away.
These are the most basic tech security tips everyone should follow. If you incorporate them in your day-to-day practices, you will make sure to protect both your online and offline assets. Interested in more tech security tips? Feel free to continue your search online, as there are many other ways to protect yourself from cyber criminals.