Building in tight fencing to keep your data safe

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It is a well-known term we usually hear ‘Precaution is better than cure’. As we are getting into this digital era, one of the main concern is about the security of the data. Data is generated everywhere in our daily life as everything is connected to IoT (Internet of Things). One of the major worries is data breach which can lead to the cyber-security and many companies are making a large amount of investment to strengthen their security.

Recently our Honourable Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed to information sharing and coordination among nations to fight the threat of digital space becoming a “playground” of terrorism and radicalization, saying a fine balance can be struck between privacy and national security. The quest for an open and accessible internet, he said, often leads to vulnerabilities like cyber-attacks, and a major focus area should be the training of professionals to ‘counter cyber threats.

Speaking at the Global Conference on Cyber Space in New Delhi, he said the internet, by nature, is inclusive, but the quest for an open and accessible internet often leads to vulnerability like cyber-attacks. Stories of hacking and defacement of websites are the tip of an iceberg. They suggest that cyber-attacks are a significant threat, especially in the democratic world. We need to ensure that vulnerable sections of our society do not fall prey to the evil designs of cyber-criminals. Alertness towards cyber security concerns should become a way of life.

Global cyber-attacks like WannaCry in May-June this year infected over three lakh computers, disrupting work at banks and multinational firms and shutting down port operations, security experts say.

To handle those situations we should come up with extra measurements to deliver those results. Here are some of the tips that can help to protect from cyber-attacks:

  • Instead of ‘Passwords’, Use ‘Passphrases’ for Different websites
  • Secure your computer/laptop physically and by:
  • Activating your firewall
  • Using Anti-Virus/Anti-Malware software
  • Prevent spyware from getting into your computer by NOT installing ‘cracked’ software.
  • Never upload your personal data ‘unencrypted’ to Dropbox, google drive or any online file sharing services.
  • Crosscheck your Social-Media security settings
  • Do not procrastinate update installations
  • Always secure your Wi-Fi with a secure password, WPA2 encryption, etc. Do NOT use public Wi-Fi for transactions. If not properly configured, every Wi-Fi is vulnerable.
  • Use encryption for your most sensitive files such as tax returns or financial records, make regular back-ups of all your important data and store it in another location. Do not leave your credit card around that tempts children to use them.
  • Secure your Mobile Devices Physically and Digitally.
  • Enable 2 step verification. In addition to entering your password, you are also asked to enter a verification code sent via SMS to your phone (if logged in from an unusual device). So a hacker might crack your password, stealing your password may be an easy task for some hackers, but hack into your android and read the OTP /security code sent via SMS can be a tough job.

As an internet user, we rarely think about the threat of cyber-attacks in our day-to-day life, but when one happens to our businesses/work the result can be catastrophic. By making sure we have these basic security tips in place, we can easily save ourselves from a lot of preventable headaches down the line.

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