Here’s a light, crisp refresher on 7 good computer security habits for you all.
Lock your PC when you are away
This is a no-brainer; yet, most of us may conveniently forget to do so. And we don’t realize its importance until some miscreant gets their hands on our private stuff. So, lock it when you’re not at it!
We may go without food and water for a few days or weeks, but not even a single day without the Internet! I may be a tad bit dramatic here, but this is true for most folks. Having said all that, there comes a time when we do have to go offline , and when we do that, it is a good habit to disconnect our computer too. It may sound unreal but your chances of being nicked by a hacker are way higher when you are connected to the Internet 24/7.
Change your passwords
May 5th was observed as the World Password Day and we shared a few tips with our readers. Here, let me share them with you:
- Create a strong password (use uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters)
- Keep a unique password for every online account you use
- Change your passwords regularly, especially for your online banking account
Keep your software up-to-date
Now, there are these things called ‘security vulnerabilities’ – defined as weaknesses/flaws present in the Operating System or any program of your computer, using which a hacker can jinx you to kingdom come. But you can avoid this. How? By applying the latest product and security updates (also known as patches) to your Operating System, Internet Browsers and other programs. These patches work like bandages on security weaknesses, healing them and making them less vulnerable to any exploit. Also, to make sure that your OS is always up-to-date, keep Automatic Updates ON.
Have an antivirus installed on your computer
While our digital security depends a lot on what steps we follow to maintain it, there are some things that are out of our scope. For instance, visiting a genuine and popular website may install a malware on your computer – something that you would never expect. But, such bad surprises are common. This is where a reliable antivirus software can help you by blocking such compromised websites even before you are able to access them. ‘Proactive protection’ is the word in today’s world of digital security.
Consider physical security too
In all the hullabaloo of protecting our digital security, let’s not forget that the physical safekeeping of our digital devices is also equally important. Given their compactness, laptops and tablets are more vulnerable to theft. So, be extra cautions against such risks while in public. Power surges can also be a problem, which you can mitigate by following basic safety instructions.
Back up. Back up. Back up.
This should have been first on my list of computer security habits. Nevertheless, I hope you are reading it anyway. In the wake of the recent upsurge in ransomware attacks, regular data backup is ‘THE’ step that everyone of us ought to take, unless we are not concerned about our computer data. Ransomware, to give you a brief, is a malware that takes an infected computer or its data hostage and demands a ransom from the victim in exchange for the hostages. So, having a backup of all your important data, saves you from being a victim of extortion. You can read more about what is ransomware all about from here.
I hope you find all these computer security habits useful, start practicing them and share them with your friends and peers. Stay safe!