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Stay Safe & Stay Organized Online

Internet security remains a hot topic in today’s technology-driven society, with cyber-crime damage costs to hit $6 trillion annually by 2021. Use these “Stay Safe Tips” to reduce your risk for being the victim of cyber-crime.

Stay Smart, Stay Organized: Online Information Security Tips

Stay Safe Tip #1

Be sure your password is at least eight characters long, but push to make it 14 characters. Length is more important than complexity, but still try to mix in a variety of characters, numbers, and symbols.

  • Stay Organized: It can be easy to forget your passwords, especially when you change them every 90 days as recommended. There are several apps available that allow you to safely and securely store them.
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Stay Safe Tip #2

Don’t let yourself get click-happy in a world of constant information overload. Stay alert and aware of what links you’re following online and on social pages.

  • Stay Organized: Shift into the habit of looking for “https://” or “shttp://” on websites that you’ll need to be secure, on online banking websites, or before you make any online purchases.
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Stay Safe Tip #3

Terms and conditions can be long and tedious to read through. It’s easy to scroll through quickly, check the box, and move on with your day. However, included in the fine print may be statements about how the company can use your information and pass it on to third parties for marketing purposes.

  • Stay Organized: Before you virtually sign off on anything, make sure you set aside time to fully read what you’re agreeing to, so you can opt out if necessary.
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Stay Safe Tip #4

Keep an eye on your banking transactions. If you notice anything that seems suspicious or out of place, call your banking institution right away.

  • Stay Organized: Keeping diligent records and receipts, even from digital transactions, will help you monitor your banking activity more easily. See if your bank offers an app to help keep track easily on the go.
  • Source: Matt Davis, Manager, Information Security, ESL

Stay Safe Tip #5

Keep your anti-virus systems up to date, and be sure that it’s set up to automatically scan downloads. Malware can be hidden in any file you download online.

  • Stay Organized: When shopping for an anti-virus software, be sure to look at consumer reviews and understand the pros and cons of each software. Make sure to look for items such as ease-of-use and the overall detection rate.
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Stay Safe Tip #6

Keep an eye on your credit reports. Attackers can use stolen personal information to open lines of credit, take out loans, and apply for credit cards in your name. Regularly monitoring your credit report can help identify fraudulent activity.

  • Stay Organized: By law, you’re entitled to a free report every year from each of the three credit bureaus. To stay in the know, order one bureau’s credit report every four months so you can have visibility in how your credit is fluctuating all year long.
  • Source: Matt Davis, Manager, Information Security, ESL