What is cyber hygiene? Cyber hygiene is the set of instructions and steps that users of devices such as computers are supposed to follow to maintain the system’s health and improve your security while you are online. These practices are supposed to be routine to ensure data is not corrupted or stolen. Proper hygiene is key to ensuring your data is always secure.
Importance of Cyber Hygiene
- Good cyber hygiene practices improve general security and reduce the risk of being attacked or hacked.
- You can improve your customer reputation by practicing good cyber hygiene.
- Good cyber hygiene can improve and increase productivity among employees.
- It can help the business save money by reducing costs, which you could have used for security measures, penalties, and fines imposed for non-compliance.
Generally, since the introduction of the internet, technology now plays a key role in how everything operates. Technology has changed even the way we live our lives. So cyber security is now a big thing. Data safety should be your number one priority; whether it is your business or your data, you should take the measures necessary to keep your data safe. It would help if you practiced routine hygienic habits.
Most Useful Cyber Hygiene Habits
1. Set Strong Passwords
Setting a strong password is as vital as how you lock your door before you leave your house. Your password should have a composition of at least ten characters. It should combine numbers, capital, and lower case letters and symbols. It makes it harder for cyber-attacks to bypass your password. You can also use random password-generating sites to get a unique random combination to make a strong password. But if you do this, you should ensure the site is certified first.
2. Use A VPN
What is VPN? It is the abbreviation for a Virtual Private Network. What does VPN do? It encrypts data and re-routes it through a secure server. Your data is routed through a private VPN server that only the VPN provider can access. In simple terms, a VPN explained has the sole purpose of ensuring your data is always safe at all costs. You must download the VPN of your choice and establish a secure connection via the VPN provider between the internet and you.
3. Install Firewall/ Antivirus Software
A firewall controls web traffic between the internet and your device. It is the first defense when it comes to malicious programs and malware. It manages network traffic, validates access, and blocks unwanted traffic.
4. Encrypt Your Device
When any data is encrypted, it automatically turns into a collection of numbers that can only be understood by the encryption program, making it hard for thieves and hackers to understand the content. Most devices come with a built-in data encryption option, so there is no need to leave your data exposed.
5. Use Multi-Factor Authentication
Sometimes a strong password is not enough to fend off hackers. Multi-Factor Authentication provides the much-needed extra layer of security that makes it harder for external parties to access your device. MFA works by sending a code every time you log in to your phone; without this code, you cannot access your account.
What Are Cyber Hygiene Practices?
Cyber hygiene practices are repetitive, customary practices that are regularly performed to ensure critical data is safely handled and that all networks are secure. It resembles personal hygiene, like following a specific routine when you wake up; the same applies to cyber hygiene.
What Are The Key Principles Of Cyber Hygiene?
Following A Regular Routine
Ensuring you follow a routine is very important. You can ensure you do not forget by setting automated reminders to keep you on your toes regularly. Once you are used to it, it will become part of your everyday routine.
Using The Right Tools
The right tools include factors like:
- Data wiping software: this is for whenever you introduce new software, modify system files, or add on hardware, there is a significant risk you might lose your data. The use of data wiping software will enable you to wipe clean the data you don’t need from the hard drive.
- Quality antivirus software: this is software that will be able to remove and detect malicious software, protect you from security breaches and online threats, and lastly, perform automatic routine device scans.
What Are Good Ways To Maintain Cyber Security?
Good ways are practices that generally make your data safer while you are online. There are various ways to maintain good cyber security, but the main one should be to use a sound password management system. You should use strong, complex passwords, which you should change regularly. It is a very critical and vital aspect of good cyber hygiene. If you cannot keep track of your various passwords, enroll in using a credible password manager to make it easier for yourself.