Despite an increased focus on cybersecurity in the wake of high-profile enterprise data breaches, human workers remain the weakest link in the security chain. However, there are many simple things that any CXO or worker can do to better secure their online information, according to a Tuesday blog post from Google.
Here are four ways any worker can improve their cybersecurity posture, according to Google:
SEE: Security awareness and training policy (Tech Pro Research)
1. Keep your software up to date
Always make sure that you are running the latest software version on all of your devices, the post noted. You can visit the settings in your app store to enable auto-updates; when you receive the notification to update, do so as soon as possible.
A Google/Harris poll of 3,000 US adults found that while 79% said they understand the importance of updating software, another 33% said they do not regularly update their applications, the post noted.
2. Use unique passwords
A strong password should be at least eight characters long and difficult for others to guess. However, the most helpful thing you can do for your accounts is create unique passwords for each one, according to the post.
Password reuse remains an issue, the poll found: 65% of respondents said they reuse the same password for multiple accounts, creating a security risk. While the majority of respondents (60%) cited having too many passwords to remember, they should consider using a password manager to help create and protect different passwords for every account.
SEE: Password Policy (Tech Pro Research)
3. Set up a recovery phone number or email address
Adding recovery information to your accounts, such as a phone number or email address, can help ensure that you can quickly regain access to those accounts if you are logged out, the post noted. Having a recovery method can also help alert you to any suspicious activity on your account.
4. Protect your accounts with two-factor authentication
Two-factor authentication (2FA), also know as 2-Step Verification in the Google universe, can help keep out people who do not have access to your account by requiring a second form of identification, in addition to your username and password to log in. You should enable this on every account possible, the post recommended.
For more tips on how to keep your employees safe from cyberattacks, check out this TechRepublic story.
- Cheat sheet: How to become a cybersecurity pro (TechRepublic)
- Phishing attacks: A guide for IT pros (TechRepublic download)
- Information security policy template download (Tech Pro Research)
- Online security 101: Tips for protecting your privacy from hackers and spies (ZDNet)
- The best password managers of 2018 (CNET)
- Cybersecurity and cyberwar: More must-read coverage (TechRepublic on Flipboard)
Alison DeNisco Rayome has nothing to disclose. She does not hold investments in the technology companies she covers.
Alison DeNisco Rayome is a Senior Editor for TechRepublic. She covers CXO, cybersecurity, and the convergence of tech and the workplace.