Protect Yourself From Cyber Theft

shutterstock_239458390Cyber theft is becoming more and more common, but it isn’t just big wealthy businesses that need to be careful. Small organizations (like HOAs) and individuals may also become targets because cyber attackers know they have little protection. If you want to protect yourself and your community association, check out these tips.

Be Smart About Your Password

A password here and a password there add up quickly until you have more passwords than you can remember. It’s so easy and common for people to want to use the same password for everything, but that is a huge mistake, because with a single password, once a cyber attacker discovers it, they can access everything. Your passwords should also be complicated. They should be at least eight charicters, include numbers, letters and symbols, use upper case and lower case letters and should not be words related to you. Last, never share your passwords with anyone.

Keep Important Dates Safe

If you have important information for your association or yourself, keep it safe. If it’s personal information you want to protect from hackers, such as bank information, try keeping it on a computer that is not connected to the internet or encrypt the files. If you have documents you don’t want to lose, such as board meeting minutes, back them up on a flash drive. That way, even if a virus destroys your computer, you’ll have a copy. Just remember to routinely update the documents.

Surf Smart

Another way to avoid cyber theft is to avoid places you are most vulnerable. This doesn’t mean never shopping online. Well-known online stores usually have protective measures to keep your information safe. This means avoiding non-trusted sites, such as scam sites or hacker sites. One good way to determine if the site is secure is to look at the address. If you see https at the beginning, it means it has an encrypted connection. You should also avoid pop-ups, and never enter information into a pop-up, unless you have verified it is credible and reliable.

Keeping your computer safe from cyber-attacks is important, and the best way to do it is to make smart choices. Keep your passwords protected, encrypt important files and avoid non-trusted sites. With these tips, you’re sure to protect your personal information.

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