No matter what type of online business you do, all websites warrant some level of cybersecurity scrutiny. Spend some time during Cybersecurity Awareness Month thinking about what you need to do to make yourself less vulnerable to attack as you use the Internet.
Changing passwords and making sure that you don’t use the same password for multiple sites is still very important. When one account is compromised, the rest of them won’t suffer the same fate. The passwords you choose should be complex enough to not be easily guessed. Once you have dozens of passwords, you might elect to use a secure password repository to keep track of them.
ComputerWorld.com says that they have been hearing warnings for years about not writing passwords down. But the size of the problem depends on where and how you write them down. At one point in her career, Sandra Henry-Stocker says she kept track of a few lock combinations by disguising them as phone numbers in my address book along with carefully concocted names that reminded her which combination belonged to which lock. “Only I could tell the difference between those entries and all the legitimate contact information that filled the book. Because the names made up and weren’t related to people I really knew, they served as clues.” These days a very secure password storage tool serves the same purpose and can be kept on a USB drive so it’s not even online unless needed and is securely stashed otherwise.
Don’t post anything you’re not willing to let the world see. I hear so many people complaining about their lack of privacy. At the same time, they share the intimate details of their lives on Facebook, Twitter, etc. If you don’t want complete strangers knowing about certain aspects of your life, don’t share them online with your closest friends. Use the phone or tell them in person. If you’re shopping or blogging online, look for the website’s privacy policies – or trust seals that point to privacy policies.
Don’t trust links. Period. Even if you think they came from your closest friend. Examine them, retype them, and don’t click unless you’re 100% confident they won’t lead you astray. Hover your mouse over links and make sure they point to the resource they pretend to point to – preferably with an https. Beware of carefully crafted look-alikes.
Don’t Trust Public WiFi
Don’t trust WiFi in public places with anything you wouldn’t share with anyone. Make sure not to log into sensitive accounts like your bank accounts or the back end of your website. You might be sharing everything you type and could be completely oblivious to the possibility that someone is snooping.
Multi-Level Backups & Scanning
Back up your system to multiple sites, offline media and make hard copies. If you own a website, secure it with an SSL certificate and daily vulnerability scanning from Trust Guard. If there is a security hole accessible to hackers, they’ll find it and then they’ll help you fix it!
The FBI offers its internet security thoughts for Cybersecurity Awareness Month in its “Simple Steps for Internet Safety.”