It’s true that the world is revolving at an uncontrollable speed and technological advances are witnessed on a daily basis, but one cannot disregard the constant threats that arise from cyber attacks and various security breaches. Therefore, it is very important for companies and individuals to actively take steps to protect data and information that are available online and stores in their computers. They have to ensure that customers are able to communicate with them using secure methods. It is not easy to provide high levels of security with such complex systems and challenging environments. Here are a few ideas as to how you can keep your system secure and handle your customer data with care.

The first rule that you should keep in mind is to establish a higher level of internal standards. Make sure that all internal decisions that you and your team make regarding security should be compared against a list of predetermined standards and ideas. The list should be identified and updated as issues that are related to system security. Once you have established these internal standards, you along with your team will be able to work around it and also help new recruits to understand why they have been set up in such a manner.

Always remember these four pointers when protecting your system.

  • The Use of Security Software – The most important part that you can play to safeguard your system is to install and maintain valid security software. The usual drill and the safer options for personal computers would be Windows Defender for Windows 8.x (Windows 8.0, Windows 8.1 and Windows RT 8.x) and Windows 10 which consists of a full antivirus suite and Microsoft Security Essentials for Windows 7 and Vista. There are also plenty of tools that will help you protect and dispose personal information stored on your PC such as Identity Finder and tools that will alert you when your current software applications are out of date or if they need a security update.
  • Try to stay away from logging in to a computer with administrator rights unless you have a specific task to perform. If you run your computer as an administrator, then your system becomes more vulnerable to security risks and various exploitations. Visiting an unfamiliar site with these types of high privileged accounts might cause extreme damage to your system which can include deleting all your data, creating new accounts with administrative access and also reformatting your hard drive etc.  If and when you need to perform tasks as an administrator, make sure that you follow a secure method.
  • By using a secure operating system, you can always make an effort to update and apply the latest service packs. Your operating system has tools to help you in doing so.
  • Ensure that you backup your data frequently. This will help you protect all your data if your operating system crashes due to a virus attack or hardware failure. External hard drives, USB flash drives and cloud storage is what we suggest.
  • Install a firewall that is again from a secure service provider.

Try and Avoid Threats as much as possible. Here are some steps that you can follow in doing so.

  • Do not share your password or passphrase with anyone else. Choose strong words and phrases which are alphanumeric. Most of you out there have the tendency to share your passwords with friends and family. Try avoid doing that as much as possible.
  • Always be on alert when you receive emails or attachments from unknown personnel with strange subject lines. If you were expecting an email from a new customer, always scan the attachment with antivirus software and then open it. There are many spam mails that consist of viral data.
  • Think before you click. This is quite a common issue with most people. Do not click on any link that you cannot verify or that simply is available right throughout the internet. Chances are that you have clicked an unknown file to download. So, always be sure when you click on random links.
  • Refrain from downloading unfamiliar software from the internet. There are millions of free software that is available for you to download which may appear to be useful. Chances are that most of the software contains spyware which will instantly damage your operating system, generate unwanted pop-up ads and also tamper with your personal information and secure data. Ensure that you always go for public domain software that you can get from reputable sources.
  • Remember to logout or lock your computer when you are stepping away. If you forget to logout, there is indeed a security risk since your data and the system becomes vulnerable to anyone who is close by. Unknown users can hack in and perform malicious tasks that could cause you trouble and a chance of losing all your data within minutes.
  • We also recommend you to restrict remote access such as file printing and sharing. However, working within a company has its obligations and there are enough and more instances that you have to share your resources with others. If you do, make sure that you provide access when it is needed and disable when the task is done.
  • All sensitive data pertaining to you and your customer has to be treated very carefully. Try not to gather each and every bit of detail when it comes to your customer’s background. Just get what you want and secure it.

Securing your system is actually not rocket science. If you follow these simple steps and stay away from unwanted websites and links, it helps you to protect your data. There are many methods as mentioned above, that you can use to keep your data secure. What you have to do is follow them accordingly. If you disregard these tips and continue to be careless, then the price you pay will be inexplicable.

What are your options when it comes to keeping your system secure?

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