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How to improve your personal cybersecurity

5 ways to improve your personal cybersecurity

“Anytime, anywhere” has become the enterprise workforce’s mantra. Employees in remote and home offices, as well as those on the road, can stay productive by utilizing cloud applications, collaboration tools, and personal devices connected to their corporate network. 

Personal data and information are more vulnerable than ever in an increasingly digital world. A cyberattack is estimated to occur every 39 seconds. As hackers become more familiar with technology, cybercrime is on the rise. 

You must safeguard your personal information. Building awareness and foundational habits into your daily life is the best way to combat these various attacks. According to a Pew Research study, the majority of internet users can only answer half of the questions on a basic cybersecurity knowledge quiz. Educating yourself on digital best practices will help you protect your personal information and reduce your vulnerability to cyberattacks. 

Even with increased security, there are some simple steps you can take to protect your data. Here are five recommendations. 

Use strong passwords 

Use of strong passwords
Weak passwords are the main responsible for most of the cyberattacks. Make sure yours is secure enough!

Strong passwords are one of the first lines of defense against breaches, and changing them regularly may help keep hackers out.  

According to Verizon’s Cybersecurity Division, weak passwords were responsible for 81% of cyberattacks in 2018. Passwords should be between 8 and 64 characters long, with at least one lowercase letter, one uppercase letter, and four symbols. Also, change your passwords at least once a year and only use the same password once. 

But even when prompted, most employees will not voluntarily update their passwords. Make it a requirement for users to update their passwords on a regular basis, and teach them how to create and remember strong passwords. 

Some people often struggle to create and remember their passwords, so consider using a password manager, which will generate unique, long, and complex passwords for you and store them encrypted. 

Implementing two-factor authentication (2FA) or multi-factor authentication (MFA) 

While strong passwords usually protect your data adequately, advanced hackers can still access your data. 

When a user logs in to a website, he or she must enter an additional one-time password. This one-time password is typically sent to the user’s email or phone. Setting up 2FA or MFA creates a layered defense, making it more difficult for an unauthorized person to access your information. 

Even if your data is compromised, a hacker will be unable to access it without verification from your device if you use two-factor or multi-factor authentication. 

Don’t use public Wi-Fi 

Using public Wi-Fi jeopardizes your login information, computer security, and any personal information on your device. This is because a large portion of public Wi-Fi does not use encryption, leaving you vulnerable. 

Currently, 24.7% of all public Wi-Fi networks do not use encryption. To avoid this, use a VPN, which encrypts traffic between your device and the VPN source, thereby protecting your data. If you don’t have access to a VPN, avoid using public Wi-Fi to keep your data safe. 

Software updates, antivirus, and firewalls 

Importance of keeping up to date your software
Cyber delinquents are always looking for flaws in your system. The best way to keep them away is to keep up to date your software, firewalls and antivirus.

Your software, operating system, and browser should all be up-to-date at all times. 

Viruses, spyware, malware, phishing attacks, and other malicious software. Your data can be compromised in a variety of ways.  

If your company uses a firewall, make sure the software and firmware are up-to-date. The longer a system has been in use, the more time hackers have had to try to find flaws. By updating your systems and using antivirus you can keep malware and hackers from exploiting security flaws. 

Be careful with social media 

Social media is an excellent tool for staying in touch with friends and family. However, be cautious about what you post online. 

Criminals and hackers can learn a lot about you by looking at your public profile. And, just as you would not share all of your personal information with a stranger, you should not share all of it online. 

Whatever can expose your data, location, or sensitive information shouldn’t be shared on social media. 

Conclusion 

These new technologies have opened up a new frontier for cybercriminals. Cybersecurity has become a necessity to protect your business and yourself. 

You can browse, shop, and enjoy the web while feeling secure about your personal digital security if you keep these tips in mind. 

We have more information on protecting your personal data and protecting your business from threats in our EmpowerIT blog if you need it. 

So, what are you holding out for? Begin implementing these cybersecurity tips right away! 

You might be interested in:  

How to develop an effective cybersecurity strategy 

Why it is important to use multi-layered security 9 cybersecurity tips to improve your business

9 cybersecurity tips to improve your business

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