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The Finish Line

The Finish Line!

Oh wait, there is no finish line when it comes to our online security...

It’s obscene, but conservative estimates plot the swelling costs of cybercrime will exceed $2 trillion by 2019. Surveys conducted in 2017, reveal that 4 out of 5 security leaders said it was likely their enterprise would experience a breach that year. It’s a familiar tune—too familiar, “It's not a matter of if, but rather when” the next big data breach occurs. Are you prepared? Is your business?

Whether you are in charge of your company's security stack, or just in charge of your own household, there are steps you can take to stay safe. With the increased frequency of breaches in the last few years, it's important to evaluate how you operate when it comes to security and to optimize and adhere to those practices. Here are some more tips to consider, as we strive to embed cybersecurity into our collective consciousness.

Tips to keep your ASSets safe:

Security needs to be a concern for you, whether you’re running a small business, leading a team within a larger organization, or striving to keep your family safe. Here are four easy steps you can follow to get started:

Educate your people: Employees are the weakest link when it comes to cybersecurity. Invest in education and coaching. Make internet safety a part of your corporate identity and dialogue. Reinforce and reward the merits of good security habits. Enforce policies that promote password hygiene, acceptable use, and clarify the corporate stance on downloading content, streaming and sharing information online.

Do not press the red button… Don’t click that! Make this mantra a part of your corporate dialogue. While surfing websites or checking email, employees need to be aware of suspicious links and activity. Prepare your team for phishing attacks as you’d prepare them for a fire—send out fake phishing emails and discuss the results.

Enforce strong password policies: The 2017 Verizon Data Breach Report, listed the cause of more than 80% of confirmed breaches as due to weak, reused, or stolen passwords:

  • Do not tape your password to the underside of your keyboard, or write it on a post-it-note stuck to your display.

  • Do not use passwords that incorporate any iteration of the word “P@ssw0rd”.

  • Do use strong passwords and develop a system to keep them unique for single use.

  • Use a password manager or hire a coach to teach your entire org how to use one.

Strong passwords, a primer: The truth is passwords are merely a tiny obstacle to a determined hacker using modern equipment and tech to hack. But, that tiny obstacle is often enough of a deterrent. So, for strong or complex passwords, here are the basic minimums:

  • Passwords must be at least 8 characters long

  • Each character-set used increases the complexity of the password exponentially so be sure to include upper and lower-case letters, numbers, and #SpecialCharacters

Try using a 3-pronged approach to create a personal system that makes sense to you. This will enable you to easily remember unique and complex passwords for everything you need passwords to protect. A 3-pronged password looks like this:

[prefix]+[Complex Root]+[site/location]