It’s more important than ever to keep yourself protected online. Hackers have grown more skilled at tricking us into handing over valuable passwords and private information. That’s why the Fixed Fee IT team has compiled our top tech new year resolutions that can strengthen your protection against cyber-attacks.
Much like flossing, using different passwords is a healthy habit that we can never seem to do. Unfortunately, hackers have caught on to the fact that you use your pet’s name for every password. Let’s say they gain access to your Amazon login – they will try that same login on your banking apps, emails, work accounts, and so much more.
The best way to prevent a breach of multiple accounts is to use unique passwords for each login. We recommend using a password generator, like this one from LastPass. It will generate complex passwords strong enough to slow down attacks. Make sure you pick unique passwords that are at least 12 characters long and include uppercase letters, lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols.
Now that you have unique passwords for every login, you may be worried about how you’ll remember them all. Don’t write them down! Not only is losing your password list a huge inconvenience, but it could also end up in the wrong hands.
Instead, use a password manager like LastPass – a single place that stores and protects your passwords. Instead of memorizing every password, you only need to memorize a single complex one to enter your main account. Most password managers offer free options, with available upgrades to meet your business and personal needs.
We’ve said it once and we’ll say it again – enable MFA for as many logins are possible. Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is the last line of defense between hackers and your private information. When enabled, it will require you to validate your login using two or more methods of verification (like an authenticator app or face ID).
We highly recommend setting up MFA on any account that you wouldn’t want people to have access to, such as retirement, banking, and work accounts. Duo is a great MFA option for business, but Microsoft and LastPass also offer apps.
Learn more about why MFA is so important here.
We rely on tech companies like Apple and Microsoft to create impenetrable devices that are safe and secure. Unfortunately, no system is perfect. Hackers can still gain access to your phone and computers without ever interacting with you.
In fact, some iPhones have experienced vulnerabilities as recently as May of 2020 that have allowed hackers to gain access to photos, messages, and more. Apple was able to resolve the issue with an update that included a patch. Updates commonly include these kinds of security features and patches, so it’s vital to regularly update your devices.
If you’re someone who has a hard time keeping your iPhone up to date, we have a tutorial on how to enable automatic updates.
Cyber-attacks are no longer a matter of if, but when. The best way to make sure your documents and digital assets remain safe is to back them up on a cloud storage system. Otherwise, malware on your computer could lock you out of everything.
OneDrive, iCloud, and Dropbox are all common cloud storage systems, and allow you to access your information across a variety of devices. Make sure that you choose a complex password for your cloud login, and that you also enable MFA. Because it holds private information, treat your cloud storage account like you would your bank account.
Unlike a gym membership or sugar detox, our tech new year resolutions are painless and easy to stick to once you start. It’s best to take one resolution at a time to ensure everything is set up correctly and functions properly. If you need help deciding where to begin or have any questions, reach out to our Fixed Fee IT team anytime.