Common Sense Goes A Long Way
If you’re not quite sure of a site’s validity, look on your computers internet browser for the secure icon (often an image of a padlock) in the address bar, or the “https” in the URL of the address on the web site.
The IT staff of your company can only do so much keeping your company’s network secure. Although using ultra grade, premium anti-malware or anti-virus software, or setting up an industrial grade firewall on the network computers should be adequate enough, promoting basic safety practices to the computer users goes a long way. The employees should bear most of the responsibility when it comes to using their best judgment to keep their computers safe.
1 – Make sure you continuously patch, as well as update all installed programs, including all security software and Web browsers.
Even the best, self updating software needs manual maintenance and periodical updating to prevent potential cyber criminals and hackers from creating a mess on your network or employees’ computer systems. The IT staff will usually maintain the company’s main network, as well as maintain and manage the server updates, but the employees need to assist in the process of installing updates on their own systems when prompted.
2 – Never open any strange attachments, even if they come from a familiar source.
Downloading and opening any attachment via a website or email, that happens to contain malware is an easy way to get computers infected with malicious files.
So any time you receive an email that has a file attachment, you should immediately consider whether you know as well as trust the sender. Determine whether the sender of the email fits their character.
As An Example,
If the email suggests that you click on an unknown or mysterious link, most likely the email is spam or may of been hijacked. Also, your grandmother or daughter isn’t likely to send an email to you, asking you to download some salacious photos of some kind, you then know that message is spam.
3 – Never click on links in unknown unsolicited emails.
Unknown spam email that contain malware as attachments or malicious links in the emails are frequently sent to millions of email addresses daily. This is what they do. To hackers, it becomes a numbers game, and out of the millions they send, the odds are a few thousand will click on or download their malicious program. This will gain them access to your computer and track your activity or shut down your computer altogether.
At times, clicking on ‘bad’ links may be more insidious than downloading attachments because it can take you to a legitimate looking site where you may be scammed into downloading a file, or asking you to enter your credit card number or your user name and password.
4 – Use all the security tools that’s available to you.
If the security software installed on your computer alerts you to a potential virus or malicious threat, never dismiss it. A lot of the web browsers will display icons or other warning indicators in their address bars that will help you to determine whether a site is secure or not. If you are not sure of a site’s veracity, then look for the ‘https’ or a ’secure’ icon in the address bar of the URL. Most security programs will also give you an audible alert you if you are about to visit a known potentially harmful site, and will most often require your permission before entering and displaying the web page.
5 – Never use your personal media devices on a work computer.
Although it may be more convenient to use the same flash drive for storing and then transferring files between say your home computer and your work computer, it’s better practice to keep any personal media devices separate.
If you happen to have a flash drive or any other media such as a disc that has been infected with malicious malware, then connecting that media device to a work computer is a quick and easy way to potentially infect all the computer systems in the company.
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