How secure is your computer? This is a question many are asking now more than ever as most people work from home or part time.
The good news is that today's updated personal computers have more built-in security features than ever before. Newer operating systems like Windows 10 and the latest releases from Apple will help keep you safe. The bad news is that no matter how secure you think your computer is, there is still the risk of being hacked.
The fact is that cyberattacks can occur in a variety of ways, including the usual actions you might take while browsing the web. Malware can still infect your computer and cyber criminals can steal personal information about you online.
What should you do to protect your computer?
Check out a checklist of simple security measures you can take to protect your computer from being hacked.
Below is a short checklist for improving the security of your computer. And if you need help with any of these questions, please contact us at our technical support phone, call us, chat or email us and ask for help.
Antivirus and antispyware:
Make sure you have up-to-date antivirus and antispyware installed on your computer to prevent slowdowns or data loss. Malware and spyware are still prevalent, and new ones are released all the time, so be sure to protect yourself.
Keep your software up to date:
For reliable software, especially your main web browser, it's a good idea to set it to update automatically. You should regularly check that you have the latest version of the software to protect your computer. Using automatic updates can keep your computer running smoothly and protect it from external attacks.
Backing up your data:
What happens if your computer crashes and you lose all your files? Do you have a current backup of everything? If not, how many important files will you lose? Backing up your data to a portable hard drive or online data storage like Google Docs or Dropbox will usually recover what you've lost.
Use your firewall:
A firewall is critical to keeping your information secure. A firewall helps protect you and your clients' files from being stolen by hackers. But you must make sure your firewall is enabled when accessing the internet. If you do not, you will put your personal information and the personal information of your customers at greater risk.
Use strong passwords:
Most of us use simple passwords because they are easier for us to remember, saving time. But web browsers and computer operating systems are getting smarter and can create—and remember—complex passwords for you. Creating different default passwords can be convenient, but it puts you at greater risk as cybercriminals look for people who don't use complex passwords. Make sure you create strong passwords using a random mix of letters, numbers, and allowed characters. Get creative and you can create strong passwords that are recognizable to you, but different for each of your accounts.
Secure your Wi-Fi network:
Make sure your home Wi-Fi is secure and uses a strong password to protect. Remember that public Wi-Fi is often insecure. Be very careful with your online activities when using any open network (don't go into your bank account online) as they are easy to hack.
Be careful when opening any email attachments:
The safest practice is to only open attachments that you expect to receive from trusted senders. Always pause before opening any file, even if it appears to be from someone you know, and look at the sender's email address to make sure it's really them. Unfortunately, computer viruses can be hidden by a file or what appears to be a trusted link.
Be safe online:
Avoid clicking on links on sites you don't know. If you think this might be a bad site, then it probably is. Be aware that a single click can lead to malware infection.