How do I stay safe online?

Here are four best practices for staying safe online:

Multifactor Authentication
Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is a widely accessible tool that secures accounts by requiring two pieces of information to log in. An example of this is entering a password and then typing in a one-time code sent to your email address or smartphone. Most commonly, to setup MFA you go to your settings on your account and look under “Security.” MFA is the easiest way to stay safe online and after it’s setup it makes it twice as hard for hackers to gain access to your accounts.

How to setup MFA on Facebook

Use Strong Passwords
Another top priority should be strong passwords and a password manager. A strong password should consist of:

  • Upper and lowercase letters
  • Numbers
  • Symbols
  • At least 16 characters long

If you can easily remember a password, there’s a good chance a hacker can also guess it. Remembering a 16 character password can be hard, that’s where a password manager comes in handy. Password managers keep track of all your passwords in a secure online vault and can quickly and easily auto-fill your passwords for you when you go to log into a site.  The password manager we recommend is Lastpass.

Regular Software Updates
Regular software updates ensure bugs are fixed, loopholes for attackers are removed, glitches are fixed, and device performance is improved. Get into a habit of regularly checking for updates and always try to update immediately when you get an alert about a software update.

Software Updates on Android  

Software Updates on iPhone 

Be Alert
One of the most common ways attackers gain access to personal data is through phishing scams. A phishing scam is when a cybercriminal sends a fake email, direct message, text, or even a pop-up ad with the intent of coercing you into action, such as clicking a link, providing personal information, or making a payment.  Here are some red flags to look out for:

  • Alarming “news” about an account.
  • Attachments that look odd.
  • Failure to address you by name.
  • Grammar errors or misspellings.
  • Offers for free gadgets, trips, or other items of value.
  • Language that sounds just a little bit “off.”
  • Request to click a link or take urgent action.