Top 6 Tips for Securing Your Confidential Data
You’ll find that most people do a great deal of their tasks online, thanks to tablets, laptops, smartphones and networks. Whether it’s selling or buying goods, many of us, never consider the implications of securing our data, while online, and it’s for this reason, why some of you are potentially at risk.
Below are 6 tips that you can use to properly secure your personal data, whether online or offline. Whether you’re interesting in securing your network, protecting your login details and passwords etc.
1. Create a Strategy
Rather than operating off personal thoughts and opinions, it makes sense for a business of any reasonable size to have a proper security strategy, one that outlines the ins and outs of procedure. Such a strategy should not only contain data on how to secure company data and resources, but what is to be done, in the event of a compromise. With a proper incident-response process in place, it’ll ensure that you have some general idea of what is to be done, given the circumstances. This should prevent any rash decision making, which could ultimately make things worse.
Such a strategy should be regularly updated, and easily accessible. You want it out, so that everyone and anyone can easily find it and read it. As there’s no point writing it up, if it spends most of its time hidden inside a desk drawer.
2. Delete Your Data Securely
One of the more effective ways of securing your data, is by ensuring any data that is deleted, is deleted permanently. Many end users believe that once they delete a file from their system, it’s gone for good. However, in reality, all that does, is remove references to that file, within the file system table. This means, the file is still present on the hard drive, and thus, can be recovered, given the right tools.
To delete a file permanently, that file must be overwritten with other data, making the file completely inaccessible. There are several free tools that you can use to do this. Generally, the process is called hard drive wiping, and it entails, replacing the data with useless data, like 1s and 0s. The whole process can be very time consuming, so make sure you have enough time set aside, before you engage in it.
3. Secure Your Wireless Network
If you access the internet through a wireless network, then you should be cognizant of the potential risks. There are many hackers that are in waiting, looking for ways to access your network. Using a basic encryption key, may provide some semblance of protection, at least against the average user, but generally, isn’t enough to secure you from hackers.
You want to ensure that you’ve configured your router to use the strongest form of encryption that it supports. This way you can ensure the best possible protection for your business. You may also want to consider making your network invisible, by turning off broadcasting. This will make it increasingly difficult for hackers to infiltrate your network, if they can’t find it.
4. Automate Your Software Updates
Whenever a hacker is on the prowl, looking for their next potential victim. These individuals like to scan networks, to find out which software version the potential victim is using. This way, they can determine which kind of exploits will work on the system. When you update your operating system, device security settings, and general software to the latest version, you make it more difficult for hackers to exploit you.
Be sure to set updates to occur automatically, in the background, with very little input form yourself. This way, you can enjoy the increased security, with very little input from yourself.
5. Using One Password for One Account
One bad habit, that a lot of end users make, is to use the same username and password for multiple accounts.
The main reasons why you don’t want to do this, is because a hacker, if they acquire your login credentials, will be able to access all of the accounts you’ve setup with the same credentials. This gets even worse, if they are able to access an online account that has some kind of payment methods or details, attached to it, as this means he/she could steal your money.
If you’re someone who has trouble remembering the various passwords you’d have to create for all the different accounts, then you can and should invest in a password manager tool. With such a tool, all you need to remember is the one decryption key, to log into the tool, and it will auto-fill the login details for all accounts you have it setup for.
6. Use the Cloud
If you have a small business, which lacks the necessary resources, funds, expertise or employees, to stay on top of all its daily security needs. Then you may want to consider using a cloud service provider.
When you use a cloud provider, they will carry out tasks, such as storing and maintenance of your data, as well as all security needs, like security updates and patches. While this make not be ideal for the largest organisation, if you’re a small business owner, then this may be the right place for you to go. As it should fulfil all your security needs.
–AUTHOR INFO—Uchenna Ani-Okoye is a former IT Manager who now runs his own computer support website https://www.compuchenna.co.uk.
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