Everything from our web browsing to mobile devices and the smart devices installed in our homes has the potential to erode our privacy and personal security. We must all do whatever we can to safeguard our personal privacy from cyberattackers and scam artists.
Your Personally Identifiable Information, known as PII, can include your name, physical home address, email address, telephone numbers, date of birth, marital status, Social Security numbers, and other information relating to your medical status, family members, employment, and education.
All this data, whether lost in different data breaches or stolen piecemeal through cyberattacks, can provide attackers with enough information to conduct identity theft, take out loans using your name, and potentially compromise online accounts that rely on security questions being answered correctly. In the wrong hands, this information can also prove to be a gold mine for advertisers lacking a moral backbone.
The average user also has about 26 password-protected accounts, but only has five different passwords across these accounts. That makes us more susceptible to hacks, especially brute force attacks. With more than 85 percent of Americans keeping track of online passwords by memorizing them in their heads, it’s nearly impossible to memorize up to 26 passwords. And with a plethora of passwords, it’s important to install a password management program. However, a shocking low 12 percent of Americans actually have one installed. Panda Security has put this infographic together to show how vulnerable we are to hackers getting our personal information:
The Minnesota Attorney General also has a great article to read about this topic: Internet Safety - How to Protect Yourself Against Hackers. Below is a hi-level summary of what you should do to protect your personal information:
Protecting Computers and Laptops
- Make sure your security software is up to date
- Install antivirus and antimalware software
- Disable connections when you aren’t using them
Protecting Cell Phones
- Create a strong PIN or passcode
- Only install trusted applications
- Keep your software up to date
Protecting Other Internet-Connected Devices
- Review your network and device names
- Create unique passwords for all devices
Protecting Online Accounts
- Delete suspicious emails
- Use secure devices
- Create strong passwords
- Use multifactor authentication on your accounts
- Sign up for account alerts
If Your Device or Online Accounts are Hacked
- Have devices inspected
- Change your passwords
- Monitor financial accounts
- Notify others
- Watch out for other users
The CentraWiFi Blast Router includes ProtectIQ™ which gives you the internet security you need. ProtectIQ™ is a network-level security application that works quietly in the background and proactively keeps malicious websites, viruses, and intrusion away from your home 24x7. ProtectIQ™ was awarded the 2022 Global InfoSec Best in Anti-Phishing, Network Security & Management system.