Lake Havasu City, AZ – If you were one of the lucky ones to that got a new laptop or tablet this Holiday season, here are some tips on how to properly secure your new technology.
- Turn on your firewall: They provide an essential function of protecting your computer or device from potentially malicious actors. Without a firewall, you might be exposing your personal information to any computer on the Internet.
- Enable encryption: This makes it hard for attackers who have gained access to your device to obtain access to your information.
- Lock the device: Locking your device with a strong PIN/password makes unauthorized access to your information more difficult. Additionally, make sure that your device automatically locks after five minutes of inactivity.
- Regularly apply updates: Manufacturers and application developers update their code to fix weaknesses and push out the updates and patches. Enable settings to automatically apply these patches to ensure that you’re fixing the identified weaknesses in the applications.
- Install antivirus software: and additionally, enable automatic updating of the antivirus software to incorporate the most recently identified threats.
- Be careful downloading apps: When downloading a new app to your device, you are potentially providing that app with a lot of information about you, some of which you may not want to share. Be proactive and make sure that you read the privacy statement, review permissions, check the app reviews and look online to see if any security company has identified the app as malicious.
- Disable unwanted services/calling: Capabilities such as Bluetooth and network connections provide ease and convenience in using your smartphone. They can also provide an easy way for a nearby, unauthorized user to gain access to your data. Turn these features off when they are not needed.
- Set up a non-privileged account for general web use: An Administrator accounts allow users to make changes and access processes and functions that are not needed on a daily basis. A compromised administrative account provides attackers with the authority to access anything on your computer or possibly even your network. Setting up a non-privileged account for use in browsing websites and checking emails provides one more layer of defense.
For more information on where you can donate or recycle your old electronics, please visit the EPA’s website at: http://www.epa.gov/osw/