Tag Archives: security

Social Media Resolutions for 2017

socialmedia-facebook

Cyber security and identity theft issues are on the rise, and social media makes it more difficult for us to protect our personal information. The internet and social media have made bullying and stalking much easier as well. It is important to keep your own private information, as well as your family and friends, safe while on social media. Here are some tips that will ensure you have a secure online presence.

  1. Think twice about anything you post online. Of course, the whole point of having a social media account is to share information about yourself. Keep in mind anything you share online is difficult to un-share. Just because your account is private does not mean someone you’re friends with cannot share something you’ve posted, so be aware of that as well. A few things to think twice before posting are:
    – Your full birth date
    – Photos with geotag information
    – Rants about your job or sensitive information about your job
    – Travel plans

2. Avoid strangers or untrustworthy people as friends on social media. It may be tempting to accept a Facebook friend request from a pretty stranger. However, it just is not safe to add someone until you know them more and at least build a relationship with them. Think about all the information from the past, present and future they would have access to. It is better to be safe than sorry!

3. Review privacy and security settings on all your social media accounts. Take some time to review all the security settings for each of your social media accounts. In particular, Facebook has many different settings because there are so many ways for your personal information to be shared. Some of the options include choosing whether or not your profile is connected to search engines, who posts to your timeline, and who can contact you. Check out these tips for protecting yourself and your family on social network

Always remember the Internet is a huge place and although we may feel secure on our own social networks, that is not always the case. Connect with those you know, share wisely, and evaluate security settings on all social media accounts!

Contact an agent at Cochrane & Porter for any of your insurance needs! 781-943-1555 or info@cochraneandporter.com

How to Create the Perfect Password

Especially being this time of year, identity theft is an ongoing and growing concern that practically everyone has to face. According to cyber security experts at Generali Global Assistance, these are some of the best practices for creating passwords that help safeguard your identity online.

Don’t Be Obvious

Information such as birthdays and pets’ names makes it especially easy for hackers. Also, using “password” as your password is not strong enough as it is one of the most commonly used. Think of something unique that would not be guessed, even by someone who knows you personally.

Make It Long

According to The Guardian, security experts agree that a password should have a minimum of 12-14 characters. Richard Cassidy, technical director of cyber security company Alert Logic, explains that a 14-character password could take roughly 811 trillion guesses to figure it out! He states, “Length is the thing that gives you protection, not complexity.” Passwords with eight-digits can be cracked within hours, he explains.

Write Them Down On Paper

If one of your passwords is especially long and you feel you may not remember it, write it down on paper and put it somewhere safe in your home – storing on your computer makes it easier for someone to hack.

Use a Passphrase, not Password

Instead of just using one word, use a short sentence. For example, “Newspaper” could be cracked quickly, while “IReadTheNewspaper” would take significantly longer – up to two years to be exact!

Be Clever About Using ‘Special’ Characters

It is normal to exchange an “a” for an “@” or an “i” for a “1”, but hackers are absolutely aware that people do this, so it is important to refrain from using these common replacements, especially if you are using a one-word password.

The Worst Passwords

  1. 123456
  2. password
  3. 12345678
  4. qwerty
  5. 12345
  6. 123456789
  7. football
  8. 1234
  9. 1234567
  10. baseball

Contact an agent at Cochrane & Porter for any questions regarding your insurance – we would love to help! 781.943.1555 or info@cochraneandporter.com