April 22, 2014

Safe and Secure: Working Out IT Security Kinks

With so much of our information online these days, it’s no wonder that many people experience a certain amount of anxiety about security. Even large corporations such as Target have had significant security breaches that have compromised many customers’ financial security and personal information. The crazy thing is that not a lot of people understand information technology well enough to know how to protect themselves as best they can. Both individuals and small businesses should learn a little more about how to set up a safe and secure online presence.
Servers and Webpages
If you own a business or have networked computers in your home, it’s important to have a 
secure server. Look into cheap servers at http://www.togglebox.com/. If you have a website for your company or personally, you may also want to have your own server to maintain control over your site. If your site collects personal information, such as credit card payments or email addresses, you’ll want to be sure to enable SSL or TLS  – Secure Socket Layer and Transport Layer Security on each of your pages. These are cryptographic protocols which provide security in communication over the internet. Simply put, they use cryptography to prevent anyone other than an intended recipient from accessing the information you’re sharing. 
Password Protect
It may seem too simple to mention, but password protecting your business or personal wireless internet is essential to maintaining security. Most people now understand the importance of a password to prevent others from accessing their wifi, but some individuals still have not protected their wifi. If another person is using the same account as you while you’re sending and receiving personal information, it’s relatively easy for a skilled individual to hack in and steal your info. This is also true of public wifi, where many people may be accessing the same account. As a rule, save any personal transactions for a password protected wifi account. 
Research Companies
If you shop online frequently, it’s important to do a little research on companies before handing over your credit card information. Big companies like Amazon are less of a risk, because they are well known and reputable. However, if you’re looking for an obscure part or gift and purchasing from an unknown company, look them up, read reviews, and do your due diligence to be sure you’re not handing over your credit card information to a fraud.

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