How to keep your digital devices as safe as your home
Picture your home. Would you say it’s secured? What about your neighbourhood? Would you say it’s relatively safe? Now, if you listed your home as secure and your neighbourhood safe, would you leave your front door unlocked? Exactly. When it comes to our digital devices, we need to be just as vigilant.
The busy parent’s five minute digital security checklist
We know this may sound like a chore, but trust us, each of these tips take just a few minutes.
- Switch on lock screens for every device: Our phones and tablets usually have us logged in permanently to all our social media channels and email. They also store all our photos. To keep this highly personal information safe, remember to set either a password or fingerprint lock for all your digital devices.
- Laptops and home computers need stronger passwords: While it’s tempting to use easy passwords or the same password everywhere, we strongly urge you not to. If you lose your device or it gets stolen, common or simple passwords can be cracked in hours. We recommend using unrelated words, a mix of upper and lowercase and special symbols (@#$%^&) in your password.
- Ensure your Wi-Fi network & router are password-protected: Again, we urge you not to stick with the manufacturer’s default password. Please change the passwords and make sure to write them down in a secure place (a hidden notebook at home works best. Do not email passwords to yourself because those are saved on a server, which could be compromised in the future).
- Install anti-virus protection: Laptops and home computers need antivirus software since they are used by multiple people and therefore at a greater risk of being infected if someone in your house accidentally opens an unsafe email or downloads an unsafe attachment. We also urge you to check the software for any updates at least once a month. This ensures the software recognises any new form of malware or virus that has been created recently.
- Make a copy of your important data: Machines can fail at any time. And should your laptop, home computer, smartphone or tablet stop working, you may not always be able to retrieve the data from the devices’ storage. That’s why we recommend using online storage services such as Google Drive, Dropbox or OneDrive to store copies of all your important data. Once you set up a backup with any of these services, they will automatically make copies all your important data at fixed times during each day, week or month as per your request.