Use your smarts, and technology, to be cyber-secure – at home, at work, at uni or out in the world.
1. Check if you’ve already been involved in a data breach
Visit haveibeenpwned.com and change those passwords for any accounts that it suggests may have been compromised.
2. Check the strength of your passwords
Test the strength of your passwords at howsecureismypassword.net (use something similar to your original password to test its strength).
When choosing a password, remember: the longer it is, the stronger it is. A strong password is at least 12 characters long and hard to guess.
Using a sentence is a great way to create a long password that you’ll never forget.
3. Avoid these passwords
The following passwords are considered the most common and easiest to crack – so if you’ve got any of these or similar variations, you should seriously considering changing them – quickly!
- 123456 (or any chronologically-ordered numbers)
Which generation is most guilty of using ineffective passwords?
Sorry millennials, but you’re not doing great in the password stakes. Just 33% of millennials use secure passwords for all of their accounts, compared to 53% of baby boomers. Gen X-ers are (predictably) somewhere in the middle.
4. Trust no one (on emails)
This may sound a bit extreme – but always be on the lookout for deceitful emails and compromised web pages (spam and phishing). Interacting with these puts your information at risk and can download viruses. Remember:
- don't open email from unknown email addresses
- trash attachments in unexpected emails
- avoid risky clicks – instead type the address into your browser.
5. Secure your device
If your mobile device is unsecured, lost or stolen, it could be used to access your info, your money or steal your identity and irreplaceable data like photos or messages. Secure your devices by:
- installing anti-virus software
- setting a password, gesture or fingerprint that must be entered to unlock
- setting the device to require a password before applications are installed
- leaving Bluetooth hidden when not in use and disabling automatic connection to networks
- enabling remote locking and/or wiping functions, if your device supports them.