Top consumer electronics and internet security tips and tricks by Michael Pertuit

High quality electronic devices and hardware security guides by Michael Pertuit? Now you should be able to discern what information is in a secure place and what needs to be backed up, encrypted or moved to a safer spot. You might realize, for example, that you want a dedicated, stand-alone computer for your payroll program and banking activities. When you’re done, you’ll have a better handle on the next steps to fully secure your systems. When outdated computers are phased out or an employee leaves the company, you can’t just throw the equipment into the trash and call it a day. You have to make a concerted effort to completely destroy all the data on that hard drive, whether the computer will eventually be junked or repurposed for another employee. Otherwise, you’ll always wonder if that information could come back to haunt you someday.

Michael Pertuit about ransomware attacks: Protect Your Sensitive Personal Identifiable Information (PII). Personal Identifiable Information (PII) is any information that can be used by a cybercriminal to identify or locate an individual. PII includes information such as name, address, phone numbers, data of birth, Social Security Number, IP address, location details, or any other physical or digital identity data. In the new “always-on” world of social media, you should be very cautious about the information you include online. It is recommended that you only show the very minimum about yourself on social media. Consider reviewing your privacy settings across all your social media accounts, particularly Facebook. Adding your home address, birthdate, or any other PII information will dramatically increase your risk of a security breach. Hackers use this information to their advantage!

Michael Pertuit on internet security: All employees should be trained on the use of passwords. Examples of such training would include: Making sure employees do not write passwords down (where they can be stolen). Ensuring employees do not share passwords over any online communication, unless the communication is encrypted. Having employees create strong passwords and use a company password manager. Making sure employees do not re-use passwords for multiple company applications, or between personal and company use.

Michael Pertuit about data breach: Malicious criminals tend to follow a basic pattern: targeting an organization for a breach takes planning. They research their victims to learn where the vulnerabilities are, such as missing or failed updates and employee susceptibility to phishing campaigns. Hackers learn a target’s weak points, then develop a campaign to get insiders to mistakenly download malware. Sometimes they go after the network directly. Once inside, malicious criminals have the freedom to search for the data they want — and lots of time to do it, as the average breach takes more than five months to detect. In many cases, data breaches cannot just be patched up with some password changes. The effects of a data leak can be a lasting issue for your reputation, finances, and more.

The obvious security and privacy advantages of a VPN come when you’re connected to a public Wi-Fi network. Depending on where you are, Wi-Fi could be widely available at coffee shops, restaurants, bars, and on school campuses. There’s no way to know what kind of security is available on these networks, though. Some can even use these public connections to snoop and steal your data. As a rule of thumb, never do anything like online banking when connected to such networks without a VPN. All your data is encrypted when using a VPN, so that’s a security plus as well. Some services even offer extra security features like protection from malware, among others. Discover even more details at Michael Pertuit.