The First Lesson

Hygiene. It sounds so simple and maybe even a little gross. However, just as you wash your body, hair, and hands to stay clean, your cyber hygiene needs regular attention as well.

Cyber hygiene is the action or steps taken by a user to improve their device and/or online security, by performing one-time and recurring actions to increase device stability and security and protect online profiles and data.

While it’s a run-on sentence, cyber hygiene is something everyone can practice. From first-time users, young and old, to seasoned computer gurus, good maintenance is important everyone. Here are few quick and easy tips to improve your cyber hygiene:

  1. Regularly update your device operating system (OS) and applications (apps)
  2. Don’t use the same password to login to different devices, websites, or apps
  3. Use a password manager, since having all those passwords can be confusing. Be sure to use a complex password for your password manager, as it holds all the keys
  4. Use Multi-factor Authentication (MFA), you may also see it referred to as Two-step Authentication (2FA or TFA), wherever the security feature is available
  5. Run endpoint protection software on your devices, such as anti-virus, anti-malware, or next-generation endpoint security software

See, cyber hygiene doesn’t have to be incredibly complicated, but it does take some effort on your part, the user. So, why is cyber hygiene so important? Well, data breaches and cyber attacks happen constantly, like every few seconds (for real!). Keeping your devices and apps updates protect you from vulnerabilities that are discovered by security researchers and bad actors (hackers!) alike. Using different passwords makes the likelihood of a bad actor gaining access to all your accounts at one time, much harder. Using MFA (or TFA/2FA) can increase the security on your account astronomically! Lastly, by scanning old and new files, along with software and apps for infections will keep your data and everywhere you visit online, safe.

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