KEEPING YOUR COMPUTER SECURE

Discover helpful tips on how to minimize your computer security risk.

1. Be Vigilant About Network Security.

Whether home or office, your computer should be protected by a reliable, proven security software. When in doubt, choose software from a well-known and established provider and discuss options with a qualified technology dealer.

2. Develop a Heightened Instinct.

With so many predators stalking your technology, it's a good idea to develop a healthy skepticism about the emails, texts and calls you receive. When someone contacts you that you do not know, but they speak as they know you, think twice. If something seems off, hang up or delete the message.

3. Guard Your Personal Information.

If someone requests your personal information, this should raise a red flag. Legitimate sources will use legitimate means to contact you and request this information. Similarly, keep your passwords in a safe place and update them regularly.

4. Purchase from Encrypted Websites Only.

If you make online purchases, be sure to check the security statement of the company you are buying from and make sure your information will be encrypted as it is traveling from your computer to their server. To determine if a web site has the proper security, look for an “https” at the beginning of the web address on the page where your purchase is taking place. The extra “s” stands for secure. You may also notice a “padlock” or “key” icon.

5. Consider Hiring A Professional.

Technology is a language all its own. Whether for your home or business, if you don't understand the basics, you may want to hire an IT professional to install security software, monitor your network, install a spam filter, back up your data and perform other regular maintenance to protect your network.

OnGuardOnline.gov has provided an excellent guide for minimizing security risks on your computer. Access it here.