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THE NUMBER ONE THING YOU CAN DO TO PREVENT BEING HACKED!
We've abruptly come upon the fast moving digital age. All the hype of "the internet is the next big thing" from the 1990's is ballooning into fruition right before our eyes. Never has the world ever faced an industry or revolution this big or this powerful. Are we really ready for it? Do we have a choice?
Well we might be asking ourselves this question a little too late. It seems that just about everything we do nowadays is somehow tied into the intricate web called the internet. I dare not start a list as I'm sure we all realize just how dependent we have become on our bandwidth. With this blossoming of digital connectivity has come many new and scary scenarios one can find themselves in very quickly. I believe what makes it more amplified is that it can happen without you even realizing it is even happening. The list is vast as to the kind of cyber attacks out there, too long to begin here. But a more important and much shorter list is what you can and should be doing to protect your cyberhealth. Without further ado number one on our list is...
Password, Password, Password!
Everybody I know is sick of trying to remember passwords or think of new ones. We eventually just start using the same ones over and over again through multiple accounts simply because we're tired of trying to think of new ones. This is a huge mistake. This lackluster attention to detail can potentially be the keys needed to access your most sacred accounts. The fact is that just about everybody has been hacked before, the governments themselves have lost our public records in the past let alone all the companies that we deal with both big and small all run the risk of being breached.
If you're curious to find out if you've been hacked go to www.haveibeenpwned.com and follow the links. Be prepared to hear the truth and go through all your emails, as they can very easily lead to an attack from one to the other.
When you use the same password on multiple accounts then you're opening the door for them to jump from account to account cracking all them open, if your bank password is the same as the latest trendy app you just downloaded, well you're asking for trouble. We have many options out there for saving passwords and even apps like www.lastpass.com is one we've used but I really prefer to keep my own catalogs. All this can help, but do not drag this on too long with a lot of tech facts and mumbo-jumbo. Your passwords need to be different between accounts. If you can't do this simply because you would have way too many passwords to go through, then you should at least follow a risk chart of your accounts and what category they would fall into. The chart might look something like this.
Passwords must be different between all these High Risk Accounts.
High Risk Accounts that need their own designated password: Government, Email/Computer accounts, Banking, Social Media, Business/Work.
Passwords for these accounts must never be the same as high risk! If sharing passwords between low risk accounts then be prepared to shut all them down once its been hacked.
Low Risk Accounts that may have shared passwords: Apps, Sign-ups, Unknown vendors
The quick story here is. Use multiple passwords. The time you take now to set them up could prevent months of dealing with an unwanted hack. Not to mention the emotional burden carried long after.
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2FA Authentication is a game changer!
Two Factor Authentication or 2FA is a relatively new security system, since 2016 and 2017 both Google and Apple have adopted the process. To keep it brief, 2FA is simply having a 2nd device to authenticate and verify its usage. Think of it like this, you type in a search on your computer, the searching server verifies it's you by sending out a msg to your phone saying you're searching for the said document. If you know its you then you confirm the alert that you're aware of. If you don't recognise the said user then you can block the user by clicking deny on the authentication prompt sent, letting you know all well blocking the attack from happening. You truly can see how valuable this is in preventing breaches in your network. The story here is turn on and use 2FA wherever possible!
With Passwords being different and 2FA turned on, your on your way to making a strong secure healthy network!
By implementing these simple change you're security ratings go drastically up. Your never completely out and in the clear when it comes to cybersecurity threats but you're being progressive and lessening your chances of it happening to you.
There is still much more to do as this is just the beginning but a great place to start. The next step would be securing your local network and running Anti-Viruses which you can use for free, albeit annoyingly or just fess up the money for a subscription and get rid of their continuous activation prompts.
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