I've yet to see the list of Santa's naughty kids or even his inventory of presents published online since the Web was invented. Santa must have top-notch security for sure. With the holidays coming up and all the craziness surrounding it, it’s time to be more alert and cautious than ever. Here are our top tips for protecting your digital life this holiday season and throughout the new year.
- Be suspicious of emails, especially ones that ask you to log in. A Waffle Maker for $0.99 is indeed too good to be true. Don't even think about clicking on that deal. Plus it doesn't fit in stockings.
- Before going on vacation, do some "Sensitive Material Cleanup". Take an hour or two to go over what you have on all your devices and destroy all that stuff you no longer need. Think you’ll need it later on? Not sure? Upload it to secure storage to take it off your device, and delete the local copy.
- Got a new laptop for Christmas? Make sure to migrate all your important stuff from the old to the new and clean up the old one of any sensitive material. Better yet, re-format the old (it will work better anyway).
- Secure all your devices with passwords/pins/patterns and make sure disk encryption is on. Got a new phone? Factory-reset the old one (cause who's still not backing up photos to the cloud already?).
- Need a good New Year’s resolution? How about resetting some passwords? Bank(s), credit card(s), email(s), Facebook, work accounts, other online accounts—all should be reset regularly for your own security. Or at least make sure all your passwords are strong.
- If you're traveling, don't forget your things...especially your company things: laptop, phone, tablet, watch, documents, etc. Any of the steps above will greatly mitigate risks if you still get your property stolen or lost.
- Still looking for the perfect Christmas gift? How about a Gutenberg version of Two-Factor Authentication! Archway Carelink supports Hardware Token for 2FA but we much prefer TOTP for obvious security reasons. Still, technology never looked better than on paper.
We can’t emphasize enough how Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) is a pretty good defense nowadays. It’s definitely not perfect but it works great against a lot of easy hacks going on these days (like phishing). For those providers who can, our advice is to activate Two-Step Verification/Two-Factor Authentication before the holidays. Do you have a Gmail Account? Try it there too. It's simple and has a very small disturbance-footprint.
Following these tips is giving yourself the gift of security and confidence that you have done your part to protect your information. Wishing everyone a happy, bright, and secure holiday season!
– The Archway Team