Four Tips to Keep Your Data Safe
There is nothing more important in the modern age than keeping your information private and safe.
- By Josh Althuser
- Jul 31, 2018
There is nothing more important in the modern age than keeping your information private and safe. The recent revelations made in the realm of social media regarding our personal information and its uses has been incredibly illuminating. That is why it is imperative that you learn everything you can about cybersecurity and InfoSec as a whole.
Not for nothing, it has shown us that we are in dire need of an education. This education is centered around the methodology of cybersecurity as it is becoming more and more important every day. The results of an effective breach can be absolutely devastating and can even lead to ruin for some businesses.
Luckily, there are many different ways that you can keep your information safe so that you are not destroyed by a hack or security breach. In this article, we will examine individual methodologies designed to keep your data safe.
Upgrade your email client
Most of us use a web-based email client in the vein of Yahoo or Gmail. These services, while incredibly robust, can also have large security loopholes that are easier to break than not. While these hacking attempts are less frequent you still may be able to sleep a little better by either integrating a security application into your current email configuration or by using a premium email service that can protect more of your email's content.
While these methods do add another layer of security, the metadata that is being scrubbed from the communication can still be used to extract valuable information. In any case, being mindful of your security setup through your mail client is a great first step to securing your data.
Rethink your password
While often repeated by your local IT admin, the correct password can completely prevent a brute force from being effective and can dampen the efforts of those who access your computer remotely. The proper password should be no less than 8 characters long with a mixture of letters and numbers along with a variance of cases and special characters.
Once properly implemented you must then make sure to store it in either a digital password manager or physical secure storage container. A proper and protected password can up your security game tremendously and can prevent some types of attacks from being effective at all. While it is often repeated, a great password is the first line of defense against hackers and dolts.
It may seem like a stretch to put an encryption key on every file you have, and, in some cases, it is not necessary, but, overall it is one of the only and best ways to secure private information. Whether you are at your or home you should always put an encryption on files that matter to you or hold sensitive information like SSNs or IDs.
It may seem like a pain, but, is incredibly simple and can add a layer of security to your file system that will make it near impossible to break. This is especially true if you access any sort of public WIFI at an establishment or even at work. Encrypting files not only sounds cool but it can tremendously help in securing your information as well. The use of advanced, promising emerging tech can greatly help with this effort.
Protect your browsing
It may not seem like an essential step, but, you may be surprised by the amount of data that can be gathered from your search history and browsing history. First is the problem of cookies. These act like placeholders and are the foundational building blocks for websites to monitor who visits their site so that they can build a profile on your address.
What’s more, that same information can be lifted by hackers just like autofill information. If you consider for a moment how much you use autofill, then you might be horrified. If you are not using a secure browser like Duck Duck Go or Firefox Quantum then you should prevent companies from using your data to build predetermined profiles on you that also make hellacious assumptions about your likes and dislikes. While this may seem a bit Orwellian, which it is, it is also just the tip of the data gathering iceberg.
To further prevent data collection, it is recommended that you stop using autofill altogether, especially at work. This information is surprisingly easy to lift and, once gathered, it can be used to access almost all of your online information. This includes social media, shopping, and banking.
Imagine if one person had all that information, the damage they could do would be unimaginable. Therefore, it is much more important than you think to use private browsing and remove autofill entirely. You would trade off a little bit of convenience for an innumerable amount of security.
The internet today is a little bit like the wild west. The law is slowly reaching its way over, but, for the time being, we are on our own. Complete individual security is still left to rest on the shoulders of ordinary people who are far from becoming cybersecurity expert.
However, if you use a strong password, encrypt everything and give up a little convenience then you may find that your information is incredibly secure. It is up to us to create a safer world for ourselves and others. All that it takes is a little willpower and know how before you become a cybersecurity pro.