Computer Safety: Top Tips for Parents for Cyber Security Awareness Month
In honor of National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM), we’ve put together a comprehensive resource article for parents to keep themselves, their children and their Internet-accessible devices safe. Parents can also use this information as an educational tool to help teach their children valuable lessons about cyber security. Below is a brief summary of the article. If you're interested in more, click here for a free downloadable version of the full resource!
- The absolute minimum- Maintain 3 types of protection on your computer at all times: firewall, anti-virus software, anti-spyware software
- Keep up with updates- Keep your software current. If the updates aren’t automatic, don’t ignore your update notifications for long.
- Back up your data- Back up your vital data on an external device or an Internet subscription back up service, and store it offsite.
- Create difficult passwords- Use a mnemonic based on personal info to create a tough-to-crack but easy-to-remember password. If compromised, change your password immediately. Otherwise, change passwords every 3 months.
Online Fraud Prevention
- Know who you’re dealing with- Delete any email from an unfamiliar email address, especially if it contains an attachment. Never give out personal information. If your anti-virus software questions a site, don’t access it.
- Phishing- Delete any email asking for money; these are scams to steal your identity. Avoid responding to an email or popup asking for personal info.
- Online Shopping- Look for BBB or TrustE seals of approval on sites. Before you provide credit card info, make sure the site’s URL address begins with “https” vs. “http” to ensure security.
Personal Information Protection
- Know who you’re dealing with- Be weary of information sharing. Make sure you know who is on the receiving end whenever you provide personal information.
- Data sharing and social networking- Avoid posting personal info and/or your whereabouts, turn off geotagging on your smart phone, never accept invitations to link with unfamiliar “friends,” use avatars or pet photos as profile pics, think before you post any opinions, and set and maintain your security settings.
- National Cyber Security Alliance http://www.staysafeonline.org/
- Microsoft http://www.microsoft.com/protect/default.aspx
- The United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team http://www.us-cert.gov/index.html
- iKeepSafe.org http://www.ikeepsafe.org/
- GetNetWise http://getnetwise.org/
- Connect Safely http://www.connectsafely.org/
- SafetyWeb's Blog http://blog.safetyweb.com/
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