If you’re like most people, your computer likely contains a ton of important information that you don’t want to lose. For some, such images are of their families. Others are concerned with major initiatives, memos, and essays. The worry of losing important data to unforeseen viruses, bugs, or computer damage never goes away, regardless of the data you wish to keep safe on your computer.
TIPS TO PROTECT THE DATA ON YOUR COMPUTER
- Update your system’s operating system and web browser frequently. Keeping these completely updated will dramatically reduce the potential that your computer can be accessed by hackers. If your version of the system software does not automatically check for and download software updates, be sure to do this manually.
- Back up the data on your computer regularly. Copy your personal data to some external medium. Do this at least weekly.
- Use and update your anti-virus software regularly. This is a given, but many people forget to do this. Your anti-virus software should always be active when your computer is turned on, automatically screening new files, and you should always scan all your drives about once a week.
- Don’t download files from strangers. Even if you know the person sending you an email, never open an attached file until you have scanned it first using your anti-virus software. Better safe than sorry!
- Use a firewall connection to the internet. This firewall allows you to limit uninvited access to your computer. Without this, hackers can take over your computer and access sensitive information.
- Use a secure browser. Software that encrypts or scrambles information you send over the internet is always a good thing. You always want to make sure that your online transactions are as secure as possible.
- Password protect all sensitive information on your computer using a “strong” password comprised of a combination of letters and numbers. This will cause the data on your computer to be encrypted so that it will be difficult to make sense of by unauthorized individuals.
- Avoid using an automatic log-in feature that saves your user name and password; and always log off when you’re finished. Enough said.
Protecting your personal and professional information in an online and mobile world is really no different than protecting your house and vehicles. Security can be as simple as locking the doors, or as elaborate as monitoring and alarm systems. always Create a back-up copy of your data and do this regularly. Store it somewhere other than your main workplace, if possible. That way, if there’s a break-in, fire or flood, you don’t lose everything.