As we all know, there are security risks to using mobile technology and the internet. The Department of Homeland Security and the Better Business Bureau recommend the following guidelines to help protect the security of the data that is being transmitted or stored:
- Always keep your laptop, PDA or cell phone within sight, even when at the office. Lock your business cell phone and PDA in a secure location when not in use.
- Keep your portable device within eyesight and easy reach when traveling. Stealing laptops at airports and from trains and restaurants has become a popular data theft technique. Contact us to inquire about STOP THEFT products, which help track your stolen or lost device and allows for “boot-locking” to prevent the thief from accessing your information.
- If at all possible, do not store any sensitive data (such as bank account numbers, ATM codes, Social Security numbers and credit/debit card info on these portable devices.)
- If you or any employee (a salesperson or telecommuter, for instance) needs to take sensitive data off home or business premises on a laptop, CD, flash drive or other portable device, insist and make certain the data is encrypted.
- Password-protect access to the laptop, DA and cell phone. Also make use of passwords to protect internet access, e-mail, voicemail and address books.
- Turn off the devices when not in use.
- Do not download or accept file downloads from unknown sources.
- Do not share portable communication/organization tools with others.
- Back up all data regularly and keep back-up disks and other back-up materials in a locked, secure area.
- Be aware of Phishing – where scammers send authentic-looking emails in an attempt to have you “log in” to your accounts so they may steal the login information. Most agencies, like the IRS, will NOT email you a link – requesting logging in.
- Always use an anti-virus program, such as McAfee or Norton Anti-Virus.
- If you have been hacked or feel you were a victim of “keystroke” spyware, make a list of your websites you visit frequently. Change your passwords immediately.
- Go to the vendor or agency directly, verify the account has no suspicious activity. If it does, report it to the fraud division to protect yourself.
- If you feel your banking card/credit card information was stolen, consider speaking with the credit card company or bank to have the cards reported as compromised and have a new card issued.
- Visit The Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity Page
- Visit Annual Credit Report for your free annual credit report.