Spring is finally here! As the seasons change from the dullness of winter to the vibrancy of spring, people start to become more active. Naturally, spring brings with it an immense amount of change, resulting in the need for what most endure and call “Spring Cleaning”. A “Spring Cleaning” generally consists of yard work, home re-organization, and decluttering. As we usually go through this process once a year, we often find things that need to be updated, changed, or simply restructured. This idea of “Spring Cleaning” is also very applicable to the digital landscape of information technology. In a world of consistent innovation and change, technology also requires us to clean, change, update, and even restructure. Here are some simple privacy and security tips to help you get prepared for your next season in the digital landscape:
Privacy and Security Tips:
- Password Updates – Ensure you are updating passwords frequently – Keep in mind passwords should contain (numbers, characters, symbols, lowercase/uppercase letters, be lengthy, and try to incorporate phrases.) And start using MFA (see next)!
- Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) – For all the tech-interested people out there, research Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) and learn how it can potentially re-shape your thoughts around securing your personal devices and the online systems that you use.
- Data Collection – Be inquisitive about the data that is being collected through your various accounts (Amazon, Twitter, Facebook, etc.) – Educate yourself on their privacy policies and data sharing capabilities. Don’t consent to anything you wouldn’t approve on being shared!
- Data Back-Up – Create a better habit of backing-up data from your computer as a potential compromise could erase all of your files.
- Phishing Scams – Be sure to read emails careful; don’t just assume if the person’s name is familiar that it is actually them. Many social-engineered attacks occur by simply sending forged emails from an account identical to an address you communicate with frequently.
- Internet of Things (IoT) – Ensure you are aware of the IoT devices you have connected to your home. Many of these devices collect and store data that might be undesirable. Be sure to educate yourself on the devices you utilize. Convenience is a great thing, however, sometimes compromises are made at the cost of convenience.
- Software Updates – Be sure to update your software when prompted! Software updates are there for a reason, companies release these updates to patch holes or gaps that could potentially be threatening to your device or network.
- Strict Privacy Settings – When downloading mobile applications or utilizing websites on the internet, head over to the privacy settings and ensure you establish the desired preferences to help safeguard your digital identity.
- Verify and Repeat – Understand that technology changes with every software update that comes across your cell phone or computer, so ensure you are consistently monitoring updated applications and websites for new privacy and security settings. Many times, the update of an app or computer will reset the factory settings!
Hopefully, these tips help you get your digital season and hygiene underway in a positive direction! Remember, technology is always adapting, so it is your responsibility to perform due diligence and ensure you fully understand your digital devices. As you enjoy the conveniences of digital devices, ensure you are doing so in a safe and secure manner. And remember, you can always contact us at email@example.com with any questions!
Happy Spring Cleaning!