Eight Essential Tips for a Secure 2011

Thursday, December 30, 2010

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Eric Geier of NoWiresSecurity has recommended eight easy steps to help ensure security for your PC and gadgets in the coming year.

The list includes the obvious and not so obvious steps every user of online and mobile devices should implement.

Grier's recommendations are simple, quick to employ, and can be accomplished at little or no cost to consumers.

A summary of the list is as follows:

Secure Your Mobile Phone and Devices: Make sure you’re utilizing all the security features of the mobile operating system (OS) your phone or device is running. The two chief features are PIN or password protection so thieves can’t pick it up and use it and encryption so your data can’t be recovered. Remote wiping is also an important feature to keep in mind...

Encrypt Your Laptop: If it becomes lost or stolen, not only can some Joe access your documents without knowing your Windows password, but could recover your Internet history and passwords...

Encrypt Your Flash Drives: Flash drives can be very convenient, but can also be very dangerous if you store or transfer sensitive information and they get into someone else’s hands. If you use them for anything sensitive, you need to encrypt the drive so others can’t access your files...

Properly Secure Your Wi-Fi Network: If you have a wireless network for the home or office, make sure you have WPA or WPA2 encryption enabled on the wireless router. This password protects your Wi-Fi connection, keeping neighbors and hackers off your network and stopping them from snooping in on your communications...

Wipe Old Drives and Devices Before Trashing: Before you sell, dump, or donate your old computers, drives, phones, or devices, make sure they’re wiped clean. Windows on PCs can contain your Internet history with passwords and other sensitive information. Even files deleted via the Recycle Bin can be easily recovered by others...

Backup Your Documents and PC: Windows Backup and Restore can help create weekly or monthly backups of your personal files and settings. You should also setup a cloud or Internet-based service, such as Mozy, to backup your most important documents and files offsite...

Safely Use Public Wi-Fi Hotspots and Internet Ports: It’s best to only use public Internet access for casual browsing. But if you do check your email, connect to servers, or visit sensitive sites, make sure it’s a secure connection. Ensure the web address starts with HTTPS and there’s a valid security notification in the browser...

Use Unique and Secure Passwords: Start by changing the passwords to your important accounts, like Windows, bank, and email. Then change the others the next time you access them. Use a password manager like LastPass to securely store them and so you’ll have just one central password...

Source:  http://www.esecurityplanet.com/views/article.php/3918781/article.htm

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