Week 2 of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is focused on protecting your devices at home and work.
With the majority of Americans still working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic, all devices connected to the Internet – personal and business – need to be protected.
The average home has 11 connected devices, and that is only expected to increase over the next 5 years as homes get “smarter” and more employees continue to work remotely. #BeCyberSmart, and use the following tips from the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency to secure your devices at home and work.
1. Secure Your Wi-Fi Network: Your home’s wireless router is the primary entrance for online criminals to access your connected devices. Secure your wi-fi network by changing the factory-set password and updating it with a strong password or passphrase. Additionally, you can hide your Wi-Fi network and set up additional networks to keep personal and business devices connected separately.
2. Enable Multi-Factor Authentication: Multi-factor authentication (MFA) has proven to prevent 99.9% of account hacks. Set up MFA on all devices or accounts that require a login. Doing so gives you an extra layer of protection by needing a secondary trusted device to grant access to all of your accounts.
3. If You Connect It, Protect It: Protect every device you own that is connected to the Internet. Enable automatic updates to defend against the latest risks and update to the latest security software and operating systems. Also, protect your devices with antivirus software and routinely back up your data.
4. Monitor Your Apps: Most IoT devices are supported by a mobile application. Your mobile device could have other suspicious apps running in the background, using default permissions, and gather personal information without your knowledge. Check your app permissions to understand which mobile apps could be putting your personal information at risk.
5. Don’t Click and Tell: Limit the amount of personal information you share with apps and devices. Routinely do social media checkups to make sure you aren’t sharing any personal information that bad actors could potentially use to target you. Disable apps that could be monitoring your location.