During the month of October we've been posting some information about cyber security. By following these simple tips you will not only keep your own computer safe; you will also avoid putting customers, family and friends at risk.
Use different passwords for various accounts. Passwords should include more than six characters and be a combination upper and lower case letters, numbers, and special characters (e.g. @, #, $). Password management software like LastPass and KeePass can help make creating and managing these passwords easier.
You may already know that October is Cyber Security Awareness Month in Canada and the United States. It's also Halloween. What do these two things have in common? Well, picture this…
You get an email from a friend that recounts a funny joke and then has a link to download more jokes just like it.
You click on the link, and your computer unexpectedly shuts down. You restart. You notice a funny noise, like your computer is working overtime. You decide to give it a rest and go get a coffee. When you come back to your desk, the phone rings; it's a customer who asks if you knew that your computer was sending spam.
It's true that firewalls and antivirus software are very good protection, but only if they are kept up-to-date and strong passwords are used whenever a password is required. The same is true for your operating system.
The good news is that most operating systems and software applications allow automatic or scheduled updates to help ensure you have the latest updates.
Even when kept up-to-date, however, firewalls and antivirus software are only able to defend against known threats so healthy suspicion when checking email, and prudent internet practices can never be totally replaced by software.
Most people have heard about hackers getting access to sensitive data. Home Depot and Target are perhaps the most recent big companies to admit that their data systems were hacked and user data was stolen. It's a dangerous myth however to believe that your own personal computer isn't worth the trouble for a hacker or cyber-criminal.
If you use a computer, you likely have passwords, important email addresses, and perhaps even financial information like credit card and account numbers stored on it. Additionally, documents saved on your computer often contain metadata that can provide even more information for hackers to use. Without the proper protection, a hacker would have the opportunity to steal your identity or erase irreplaceable information if they gained access to any of this information.
Hamilton is a great community of hard-working people. Often, however, we tend to overlook our own neighbours when it comes to making business or consumer purchases, assuming that we can 'do better' outside of the Hamilton area. So to challenge that way of thinking, here are three suggestions of local businesses that you may want to support:
These folks make a great product, and their work is done locally in Dunnville, not in China where so many of our products come from. If you're interested in outdoor living areas, they are worth investigating.