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10 Cybersecurity Best Practices for Individuals

10 Cybersecurity Best Practices for Individuals

In honor of Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2022, Ferrilli is looking to empower everyday individuals and academic institutions by making cybersecurity more accessible and top-of-mind.

In this current climate, there is a growing and wholly justifiable emphasis on improving cybersecurity in our daily lives. We are all responsible for ensuring that our computers, mobile devices, and the information in our possession is secure and protected from bad cyber actors.

To that end, we’ve compiled our list of 10 Cybersecurity Best Practices for Individuals:

#1. Recognize and protecting yourself from phishing – Look out for these indications of a phishing attempt:

  • Grammar and spelling errors
  • Unfamiliar tone or greeting
  • The message is sent from a public email domain
  • Threats or a sense of urgency
  • Suspicious attachments
  • Unusual requests/request for credentials, payment information, etc.

#2. Keep your passwords up to par:

  • First line of defense against attackers
  • Keep secure passwords to prevent a data breach
  • Use different passwords for different accounts
  • Update passwords routinely

#3. Understand the benefits of using a password manager:

  • All passwords are stored safely in a vault where you can easily access multiple accounts
  • You only need to remember the master key
  • Automatically generate secure passwords
  • Store more than passwords (include documents, images, etc.)

#4. Enable multi-factor authentication on computer and mobile devices and business networks:

  • Multi-Factor Authentication is a method of authentication that requires more than just your username and password to get you logged into applications/websites
  • The three types of factors are: something you know, something you have, and something you are

#5. Follow best WiFi practices:

  • Disable WiFi when not needed
  • Never enter sensitive information while connected to an unsecured network
  • Use a VPN when connected to a WiFi that is not your own

#6. Protect internet-connected smart devices:

  • Create complex pins and passwords for your devices and accounts
  • Backup your devices
  • Be sure that the anti-virus software on your devices is updated and performing regular scans
When checking email, it is critical that you think before you click.

#7. Follow email best practices:

  • Think before you click
  • Never send personal information through email
  • Never access emails from public WiFi
  • Stay updated on phishing tactics
  • Change your password routinely
  • Don’t access your email from public devices
  • Always report phishing attempts

#8. Practice physical security

  • Encryption reduces the impact of theft
  • Rely on technology – don’t leave written passwords on your desk
  • Store sensitive devices and documents in a locked storage compartment
  • Don’t leave your devices unattended or unlocked
  • Minimize external access

#9. Practice safe web browsing

  • Keep your web browser updated
  • Customize privacy and security settings
  • Only download files and applications from reputable sources
  • Use a secure ad blocker
  • Clear cookies
  • Browse secure (HTTPS) websites

#10. Protect your personal information

  • Maintain privacy and be careful what you share
  • Routinely monitor all accounts and activity
  • Attend security awareness seminars and webinars
  • Follow security best practices