Security - Five Points to Consider
Here are some points to consider when it comes to protecting your personal computer and your network. Even if you work at an office where these things are handled by the "I.T. Department", it does not mean you don't need to pay attention to security.
If your personal computer is connected to the Internet, you DO have a network at home, and wherever you go to connect to the Internet, whether it is the coffee shop, library, or a hotel you are staying at while working or on vacation.
My personal philosophy is that any device I carry with me should be considered "disposable" and should not have any information on it that is indispensable. Important data should be secured, protected, and backed up multiple places with multiple versions.
The following is an outline of a talk I gave recently about computer and network security:
Use Secure Passwords
Secure passwords may not really be what you think they are. See the links below to learn more.
- Learn what a good password should be.
- Avoid using the same password for all of your accounts.
- Change passwords periodically – like every 6 months.
- You can use password managers to help keep track, like LastPass or Roboform.
Firewalls protect against threats coming in from the Internet:
- They filter what traffic can come in and go out.
- Can be software and/or hardware.
- Software firewalls are provided on most computers.
- Internet devices from AT&T and Comcast have Firewalls built in.
- Office networks with File Servers and multiple users need separate Firewall Appliances.
Protect your important data
Always protect your data:
- Hardwired connections are safer than Wireless.
Portable devices can be lost and compromised in public places.
- IE: Laptops, Smart phones, Tablets
- Use stationary Desktops and Servers for important information.
- Secure your data at your Office/ Home Office. Access it remotely through VPNs and secure remote control software whenever possible.
Backup your data
The only thing more important than backup, is MORE backup!
- Store multiple copies at multiple locations and have multiple versions.
- This means copies of data going back in time several months.
- Keep mirror images of hard drives containing important information – off site – and/or remotely in secure data locations.
Have a Disaster Plan
The fact is, most small businesses do not have a Disaster Plan, and never get around to it until it is too late. Here are some questions to ask to get you started on coming up with a Plan:
- How will you operate your business if your computer systems and data in the office are destroyed?
- What alternative work place will you and your team use?
- How quickly can you have access to your critical information if your computer systems and office data are destroyed?
- What alternative work place will you use?
- Will you have access to your critical information?