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These are my tips for what to do to secure your digital life and be more productive. Staying safe and being productive in a digital world is about understanding the benefits as well as the risks so you can make informed decisions and take action. You should also use a multi-layered approach to keep strengthening your cyber security over time. Take some initial steps now and then review what else is needed. If you have already been doing these to improve your cyber security resilience then that is great. Let me know what else you do to protect your digital life.

Simple tips for everyone to start with and get the basics right.

Be careful opening links and attachments

Phishing attacks are a common way to gain access to someone’s personal details that can then be used to gain access to systems or conduct fraud. Phishing involves sending emails to addresses that contain links or attachments designed to obtain personal details. These are surprisingly effective because many people will click on the link orContinue reading “Be careful opening links and attachments”

Be vigilant about what apps you install

Most of us have gotten used to downloading and installing apps as part of our daily lives. These can be useful apps to help us be more productive and organised, for communication with our friends and family or merely for entertainment and amusement. There are risks and benefits involved especially if we are installing appsContinue reading “Be vigilant about what apps you install”

Email is not secure and there are better options

Email has been about for most of our lives now and we have become used to it. However email is not secure which is something that I am always reminding people about. In the early days we were careful to never send sensitive information especially anything about our bank and yet this has become commonContinue reading “Email is not secure and there are better options”

Take care online

Being careful about what you do online has always been important and this is increasingly so in our digital world. This means thinking about whether you should click on a link or provide your personal details. Everything you do online can and will be tracked and be used for advertising and other purposes. Consider thatContinue reading “Take care online”

Update your Operating System and software

Keeping your Operating System and software up to date is one of the most important steps to protect your home or small business. Operating systems and software is updated regularly to fix security vulnerabilities as these are found. If you are not applying updates then you are leaving your system vulnerable to attacks that exploitContinue reading “Update your Operating System and software”

More tips to improve when you are already doing the basics.

Enable 2 factor authentication for all your accounts

Using 2 factor authentication is one of the most important things you can do to protect your digital identity and it is simple to do. 2 factor authentication means that your password and one other form of authorisation is needed to use your account. This is usually done by text message or email (which couldContinue reading “Enable 2 factor authentication for all your accounts”

Install security software

Yes you should install security software on your Windows PC. Most popular Security Suites include anti-virus and firewall software. The anti-virus will scan your computer and downloaded files for malicious programs and give you options to remove or manage this. The firewall will monitor and control how programs and services connect to the Internet. BothContinue reading “Install security software”

Start a discussion to talk about security and privacy

One of the most important things you can do to improve cyber security for your business, at home and with your family and friends is to have a conversation about this. Many breaches occur because people are not aware of what they can and should be doing to protect themselves. Phishing attacks are an exampleContinue reading “Start a discussion to talk about security and privacy”

Use a password manager

All of us have many online accounts for banking, government services, social media, entertainment and email. Long, complex passwords are hard to remember. We are often prompted to change these regularly. Therefore it is tempting to reuse passwords across multiple sites but you should never do that. A password manager will generate a strong uniqueContinue reading “Use a password manager”

Use a reputable VPN

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) can be a useful part of your online toolkit. This is especially important if you often connect to wifi hotspots when travelling away from home. In secure WiFi connections such as at shopping malls can be compromised using a ”man in the middle attack”. If you must connect to aContinue reading “Use a reputable VPN”

Additional tips for what to do to further strengthen your security.

Backup your data and systems

Backing up your data is probably the most important thing that you can do. This is the most effective way to protect against ransome-ware and other malicious attacks. The recommended strategy is 3-2-1. That means three copies of your data, two copies on different media and one copy off-site. The off-site copy is in caseContinue reading “Backup your data and systems”

Don’t forget about physical security at your home or workplace

We have covered many of the steps that you can take to improve your cyber security resilience including updating your Operating System and software, using strong and unique passwords for all of your accounts and enabling 2 factor authentication amongst other things. We also identified the important of having an ongoing conversation to raise awareness,Continue reading “Don’t forget about physical security at your home or workplace”

Setup or upgrade your router

The router is the gateway to the Internet from your home or business. Until recently many commercially available routers have had limited security features. The steps that you can take include enable automatic firmware update (the software for the router) and changing the default passwords. You should also change the administrator login if you haveContinue reading “Setup or upgrade your router”

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