How secure is your digital life?
October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Do you know how secure your digital life really is?
To answer this question, you'll need to ask yourself a few things about your online routines. Here’s some things to think about:
Passwords - ensure you're not using the same password for your whole life! Use a password storage system (I use LastPass) to store all your passwords so you don't have to worry about remembering them. The new kid on the block is a password phrase - using a phrase instead of a one word password - think something like "I don’t like $alami on my pizza!" - it has excellent character length (35 characters), the complexity is high because of the apostrophe, exclamation mark and the use of spaces. It's also very easy to remember, and very difficult to crack.
Software updates - Set your devices to automatically update their operating systems and software. This allows you to ‘set and forget’ knowing that your devices will be updated automatically as soon as a new update is available.
MFA - Multi-Factor Authentication is a security measure that requires two or more proofs of identity to grant you access. You can use an authenticator application, email or SMS confirmation, or sometimes a security challenge. This is a great idea for all your data, but at least consider it for your very sensitive data; think accounting software, appointment software and your CRM
Keep your passwords to yourself – this goes without saying, but I’m going to say it anyway … don’t share your passwords with anyone. If someone needs access to your systems, set them up with their own credentials. This not only helps with security, but it also allows you to see who has made changes in any system has done that has an audit function. Failing that use LastPass.
Free public wifi – don’t use it! Period. It’s just not secure!
Anti-virus software – if you’re using a Windows operating system, make sure you have reputable anti-virus software installed. Those of you working on Apple devices, you can rest easier, whilst there is malware written specifically for Apple, it’s few and far between; so make sure you keep your MAC software up to date.
Phishing scams - they're not limited to emails and they are increasingly becoming harder to spot. Be cautious of requests for money, especially when they state payments are urgent or overdue, bank account changes, opening attachments and requests to check or confirm login details.
As you can see, there are plenty of easy actions you can take to up your online security, so try to take some time out this October to make your online world more secure!