While all of us here at LifeSite are celebrating our thankfulness for our families, friends and loved ones, it’s important to remember that cyber criminals look forward to the holidays, too – when people let their guard down. Here are a few reminders to help you keep the most important information of your life safe and secure during the most wonderful time of the year.
1. Use two-factor authentication. (If you don’t know what it is, then you absolutely need it.)
One of the easiest ways to steal information is to crack a weak password, or simply reset it. You can stop cyber thieves dead in their tracks with two-factor authentication (2FA). This adds another layer of security by using a one-time code that is generated by an app or is texted to your phone. That means if anyone tries to log into your email, social media or even bank account, for example, they would need your user name, password AND your 2FA code. You just made life exponentially more difficult for your hacker. And whatever you do, NEVER give out that 2FA code.
2. Encrypt your data – all of it – everywhere you can, not just during transit but especially when stored.
Get a VPN! (Ask your trusted IT guy at the office who he uses, or check out a recent top 10 list of VPN providers here.) A Virtual Private Network (VPN) is like an armored car. It makes sure your money (or data) gets safely from one place to the next. It’s like moving your personal information inside one big safe, locked up tight. That’s encryption. And if you are moving information into your LifeSite Vault, the data will also be encrypted when it is stored (broken into scrambled fragments), and only you will have the key to unlock it. Shockingly, of the over 12,000 cloud providers recently analyzed by Skyhigh Networks less than 10% encrypt their data “at rest” (when it is stored), and only 1% use customer-managed encryption keys. (psst – LifeSite Vault does both!) Where do you currently keep your most important information.
3. Back up everything – computers, smart phones and tablets.
Emergencies don’t make appointments. About the time you realize you should have been backing up important things like documents, email, or those irreplaceable wedding photos, is about the same time your hard drive crashes. Even worse, if a natural disaster strikes, some vital documents like birth certificates and deeds are nearly impossible to replace. That’s actually why we created LifeSite Vault – a secure, organized and accessible solution. Life’s information. All in one place.
For many more tips on how to keep your information safe this holiday season, please check out the Holiday Guide to Identity Security compiled by renowned cyber security expert Morgan Wright.