We are constantly connected. Even while we’re “offline” on vacation, or away from our computer or mobile devices, chances are we’re still connected in one way or another. More and more, the Internet touches almost all aspects of our daily lives.
Don’t believe it? Think of the systems that help to keep the lights on, the water running, and transportation moving. Or the devices that track your sleep and exercise, point you to an open parking spot, or control the thermostat at your home. All these and more depend on digital networks to function.
As we enjoy the convenience of these changes, we must consider the new risks they bring as well. Just as we lock our doors to protect our valuables, we must also take steps to protect our devices and information from virtual threats by properly securing everything that is connected to the Internet.
During National Cyber Security Awareness Month, we encourage you to remember a few important steps to help secure your valuable information and then practice them all year long!
- Keep a clean machine. Like your smartphone or PC, keep any device that connects to the Internet free from viruses and malware. Download software updates regularly on the device itself, as well as for the apps you use, since they often contain fixes to protect against malicious activity.
- Set strong passwords. Setting passwords that are long, unique, and hard to guess is one of the most important things you can do to protect your online accounts. Changing passwords regularly and using different passwords for different accounts goes a long way to protecting your online information.
- When in doubt, throw it out. Links in emails, tweets, posts, and online advertisements are often how cyber criminals compromise your computer or mobile device. If it looks suspicious, it’s best to delete it, even if you know the source.
- Avoid shopping on public Wi-Fis. It may be convenient when you’re away from home and on the go, but not as secure as a password protected Wi-Fi or your home network. Save your online shopping, banking, or sensitive transactions for a secure connection, preferably when you’re back at your house.
- Enable your Choice Checking IDProtect Services. This is the credit union’s proactive step to protect you and your family from identity fraud. With IDProtect it’s easy to put protective measures in place, such as credit file monitoring and alerts, to help stop fraud. >> Click here to see the complete suite of benefits.
You work hard for your money, and you know it makes sense to protect it and save it. Click here to learn more about National Cyber Security Awareness Month 2017.