Reading in the news lately it might seem like no matter what you do, hackers and internet bad guys are all over the place. While it is true that there have been several high-profile incidents lately, it’s surely only going to be the tip of the ice berg as our world becomes more connected. The COVID19 pandemic has taken an interesting toll on the cybersecurity side of things. As, with most users working from home, entirely new security incidents can occur. Traffic must be encrypted over a VPN, credentials must be kept from prying eyes, and users must still be aware of malicious software spying on them in their four hour long Zoom meetings.

A common question is: What can you do?
And quite frankly, it boils down to the same 5 strategies.

  1. Use secure passwords. – I don’t just mean 1 really good one. At this point, all your passwords should be unique. Consider a password manager so you can store them securely.
  2. Use 2-factor authentication. – These are those little 6 digit codes that can be email, texted, or even generated based on time with apps or dongles. Even if your password is compromised, an attacker still needs this random ever changing code to get in.
  3. Use a good security product. – Many people in the IT field will say that this is unnecessary and may slow down your computer. A valid argument, but a solid product like Bitdefender, which always ranks highly in third party tests, has a minimal impact on your computer resources and is great for those that can’t be trusted with a computer.
  4. Monitor your credit score – A lot of companies have your social security number, it’s a little scary. You can check your credit scores for free every year and some credit cards and banks are offering for free with an account.
  5. Stay aware. – It’s so easy to fall for a phishing or social engineering attack. Think of how many phone calls from the “IRS” or calls to extend your car’s warranty! Being aware of what sounds like a scam is a good way to prevent it in the first place.

We live in a connected world now. We all need to take the appropriate precautions.