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01Nov

Top Tips for Internet Security at Work

1) Defend your computer

  • Strengthen your computer’s defenses. Keep all software (including your web browser) current with automatic updating (or follow the directions of IT staff). Install legitimate antivirus and anti-spyware software. Never turn off your firewall.
  • Don’t be tricked into downloading malicious software. Stop and think before you open attachments or click links in unusual email, text, or instant messages (IM), on social networks, or in random pop-up windows. If you’re unsure if a message is legitimate – even from a coworker – contact the sender to confirm using a different device and another account.
2) Protect company data and financial assets
  • Don’t put confidential information in email, instant, or text messages; they may not be secure.
  • Beware of scams. Never give information like an account number or password in response to a phone call, or email or other online request.
  • For the most sensitive transactions – Automated Clearing House (ACH) payments, payroll, and the like – consider a dedicated computer not used for email or web browsing.
3) Create strong passwords and keep them private
  • Lock devices, company routers, and online accounts with strong passwords or PINs. Strong passwords are long phrases or sentences and mix capital and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols.
  • Don’t disclose passwords or PINs to coworkers.
  • Use a unique password on each account or device containing personal or business data, and change them regularly.
4) Guard company data when you’re on the go
  • Treat all public Wi-Fi networks as a security risk.
    • Choose the most secure option – it could include password-protection or encryption – even if you have to pay for it.
    • Confirm the exact spelling of the wireless network you’re connecting to – beware of clever (slightly misspelled) fakes, such as www.micrsoft.com
    • Encrypt all confidential data on smartphones, laptops, flash drives, and other portable devices in case they’re lost or stolen.
    • Never make financial and other sensitive transactions on any device over public wireless networks.
  • Use flash drives carefully. Minimize the chance that you’ll infect your company network with malware:
    • Don’t put any unknown flash (or USB) drive into your computer.
    • On your flash drive, don’t open files that are not familiar.
What to do if there are problems

Using a web service
When using email, a social network, or other service, report:
  • Scams, obscene material, or aggressive behavior to the service. For example, in Microsoft services or software, look for a Report Abuse link or contact Databranch.
  • Any misrepresentation of your organization – for example, a phishing scam that pretended to be from your company – to your system administrator.
Theft or loss of company data or other assets
If sensitive company data or accounts have been compromised because of theft or loss of a laptop, smartphone, or other device, or because of a breach of network security or an account:
  • Report it immediately to IT or security personnel, if your organization has them, and to the bank, when appropriate.
  • Change all passwords used to log on to the device.
  • Contact the service provider for help in wiping the data from smartphones and other devices.

Content courtesy of Microsoft Community Connections


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