Broward College Offers Tips for National Cyber Security Awareness Month
Cybersecurity continues to be a real concern across the state and nation. In observance of National Cyber Security Awareness Month, in October, Broward College’s Chief Information Security Officer Elvis Moreland is offering tips on how the public can prevent cyber threats, and ensure their personal information is secure and protected.
Keep a clean, updated machine. This is most easily done by keeping security software, such as anti-virus software, current. Using the latest security software, web browsers, and operating system is the best line of defense against viruses, malware and other online threats. If possible, turn on automatic updates, allowing software programs to automatically connect and update to defend and safeguard against known or potential risks.
Protect personal information. Secure all accounts, including email accounts, by creating unique usernames and making passwords that are considered “strong,” with a combination of capital and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols, which can thwart cyber criminals. In addition, you can now ask for protection beyond passwords. Many account providers now offer additional ways for you verify who you are before you log in, such as one time pin generators that are sent via text message to your cell phone.
Make sure a site is secure. When using online banking services or making purchases, always check to be sure the site is security enabled. Look for web addresses with “https://” or “shttp://”, which means the site takes extra measures to secure your information. Remember that “http://” is not secure.
Connect with care. Links in email, tweets, posts and online advertising are often the way cyber criminals compromise your computer. If it looks suspicious, even if you know the source, it’s best to delete or, if appropriate, mark it as junk email. Also, when you’re connecting to a Wi-Fi hotspot, limit the type of business you would normally connect to on a home network and adjust the security settings on your device to limit who can access your machine.
Be cyber wise. Be wary of communications that implore you to act immediately, offers something that sounds too good to be true or asks for any personal information.
Be a good online citizen. Safer for you is more secure for all. What you do online has the potential to affect everyone, so practicing good online habits ultimately benefits the global cyber community.