Securing Personal Devices

No matter your age or your occupation, chances are you spend time each day on a smart phone, tablet, laptop, or other smart device. They are an integral part of our lives. It is vital that our technology remains secure and protected. Unsecured devices leave sensitive, personal information exposed to cybercriminals.

Consider these tips to secure your personal devices, protecting your information from being accessed and exploited.

Always use a passcode or PIN to unlock your device. This will serve as the first line of defense if your device is ever lost or stolen.

Log out of apps and websites. While staying logged in or having your device remember passwords is convenient, if someone gets access to your device they can quickly access and steal information including your login credentials. If you are logged in to an account and someone else has your device, they can impersonate you, causing much damage.

Keep software and antivirus programs up to date. The apps and software on your devices will regularly update to address security flaws. Make sure to check for available updates often and install them as soon as possible.

Be wary of Wi-Fi. Turn off your device’s setting to automatically connect to Wi-Fi and avoid connecting to public or unsecured networks. Make sure your home and business’s Wi-Fi has a strong password. Never conduct financial business, access sensitive data, or use any website that requires you to enter login credentials while connected to a public network.

Backup your data. Keep a remote backup to a computer or cloud-based service so you do not lose any critical data if your accounts or devices are compromised.

Scrutinize apps. Apps collect data, so be mindful about what personal information you are sharing with them. Only download apps from trustworthy sources. Check out the customer reviews, do a quick internet search of the developer, and read the privacy policy before downloading and creating an account. Delete any apps you no longer use.

The smart technology on our devices offers much convenience. However, it is important to keep your guard up to protect you and your information from hackers and identity thieves.

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