You cannot get away from the news that Pippa Middleton’s iCloud account was hacked, with the press reporting that over 3,000 personal images had been offered up for sale.
It is not just the rich and famous that are at risk from the hackers, which is why it is so important to take steps to ensure your personal data is safe. With more and more devices in the home and office how do you keep all your data secure?
Protect yourself from Malicious Software (Malware)
Perhaps the most infamous Malware at the moment is Ransomware. Ransomware spreads from your computer to every file structure your computer can see and it then encrypts the files. This essentially locks them so you can’t open them. Once it’s spread through as many files as possible it presents you with a nice message telling you to pay up or your files will stay locked for ever. Occasionally there have been breakthroughs allowing people to find the key to unlock their files BUT as it’s a 2048 bit encryption key, the same as you use when you communicate with your bank online, the chances of guessing it are pretty remote.
The first line of defence is good anti-spam and email screening. This will block the vast majority of unsavoury email borne threats before they get to your users mailboxes.
Next up is a robust backup and archive procedures. Once a file becomes encrypted you can either spend an eternity trying to guess the key or you can clean up the infection
Backup your data
Backing up your data is a great way of protecting it and essential in terms of disaster recovery. Backing up your data simply means you store a copy of it somewhere else, like the cloud or an external hard drive. If your device is then stolen, lost, damaged or the subject of an ‘attack’ you have another copy of it.
Don’t ignore software & operating updates
While it can be a pain to get software and operating system updates, such as Windows popping up on your device, it is vital that you do the updates as they are security patches that will protect your devices against new security threats.
Password protection is key
Whether it is your wireless internet our Tesco food shopping account it is imperative that they are password protected. The more complex the password the less likely it is to be compromised. Did you know that password is still the most used password closely followed by 123456
If you can’t think of any complex passwords there are password generators on the internet that can do it for you.
Once you have come up with (or generated) a secure password please don’t then store them on your devices or stick a post it note under your desk with them on!
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