This past Spring we revealed a few IT support tips and IT secrets and found this to be a fun blog post! We figured… why not share a few more tips and secrets this Fall too. In this blog post, we’re revealing a few more helpful IT security tips and IT secrets that will keep your technology safe from hackers and cyber attacks.
IT Security Tip #1: The on-screen keyboard: use it!
One of the most notorious spyware/malware targets is your keyboard – keylogger software has been around for ages. The longtime favorite of electronic crooks, keyloggers are made even easier for bad guys to distribute and for you to accidently come in contact with by modern security breaches. The keylogger does just what it sounds like – it logs every key that you type, and then sends a log of all the keystrokes back to the attacker. How many passwords, account numbers and other sensitive data do you type on a daily basis? These are all valuable on the black market.
Luckily, there’s an easy way you can make sure sensitive passwords and data are safe from these keystroke-stealing criminals – SECRET REVEALED! >> use an on-screen keyboard when typing in sensitive passwords, social security numbers or other data. Your computer will see the on-screen keyboard taps as mouse-clicks instead of keyboard input. Banks are making on-screen keyboards more accessible to their clients on a daily basis because of the added security over traditional keypads and keyboards. This simple change in habit could prevent complex problems in the future.
IT Security Tip #2: Back to Basics
A lot of time is spent on staying protected from the newest type of scam or the newest cybercrimes, but as is true with many things, remembering the basics is the entire foundation of making sure you, your company and your clients remain safe.
Everyone in the company or organization should know basic security principles. Security principles and policies should be documented and part of every new employee training. Strong password requirements, only connecting remotely over VPN and Internet usage guidelines are examples of some common security policy items. Strict penalties for violating the security policies should be detailed.
SECRET REVEALED! >> It’s not a good habit to save files onto your computer if there is a location on the network or on your server that they can live. They’re much less likely to be backed up on your computer, whereas they’ll reliably and regularly be backed up if they are saved on the server.
If you use websites or software that do not require regular password changes, set a calendar reminder to change the password yourself every other month.
As with other things, a little prevention goes a long way – remembering the security basics, and asking about them if you don’t know what they are, is the single best thing you can do to protect yourself and protect the company.
IT Security Tip #3: Remove that unwanted freeware
Like it or not, PC manufacturers LOVE to stuff your brand-new PC full of “free” applications (they get paid to do it, so you’ve got a slim chance of getting one without a side of spamware). SECRET REVEALED! >> But clutter is the enemy of a speedy PC, and if you’re not using a particular software on a regular basis, it’s best to REMOVE it completely. That way you don’t have it sucking up processing speed AND leaving the door open to hackers and malware.
IT Security Tip #4: The No. 1 threat to your security is…
YOU! And your employees. Like it or not, human beings are our own worst enemies online, inviting hackers, viruses, data breaches, data loss, etc., through the seemingly innocent actions taken every day online. In most cases, this is done without malicious intent – but if you as a manager or owner aren’t monitoring what websites your employees are visiting, what files they’re sending and receiving, and even what they’re posting in company e-mail, you could be opening yourself up to a world of hurt.
That’s because employees’ actions can subject the company they work for to monetary loss, civil lawsuits, data theft and even criminal charges if they involve disclosure of confidential company information, transmission of pornography or exposure to malicious code.
SECRET REVEALED! >> One thing you can (and should) do is configure your firewall to document and monitor which websites users are visiting. Almost all enterprise-level firewalls have this ability built in; you simply need to configure it and monitor the reports (something we can certainly help you with). But it’s up to you to set the rules, write it into an Acceptable Use Policy (AUP), TRAIN employees on what is and isn’t acceptable and then get them to sign the AUP.
If you’re a SDTEK client, we got you covered. If not, please contact us today to learn more about our IT support services. We can help create a secure IT environment for you and your employees.
SDTEK is a top rated IT support company servicing San Diego county. We are a creative managed it service provider who specializes in personalized technology support to help our clients accelerate the success and growth of their business.