We caught up with Dennis Bonilla who is the Executive Dean, College of Information Systems and Technology, School of Business and College of Security and Criminal Justice at the University of Phoenix to talk about National Data Privacy Day. In this Podcast, Dennis shares his best password security tips.
According to University of Phoenix’s annual cybersecurity survey of more than 2,000 Americans: Nearly 43% of respondents have experienced a personal data breach in the past three years.
When it comes to password security
- Only 35% update their passwords on a regular basis.
- Only 42% of Americans diversify their passwords across websites.
- Only 29% say password protecting is part of their company’s cybersecurity policy.
- Only 24% change or update their passwords before traveling.
Use two-factor authentication
- Many accounts and programs will offer multi-factor authentication options.
- Through this method, users are only granted access to an account after providing two factors of authentication, or evidence, that they are the correct user.
- Authentication can include a security question, fingerprint I.D. or additional confirmation from a mobile device.
- The majority of accounts and devices offer multi-factor authentication, but many do not provide it by default.
- To enable it, visit the security settings and turn on the option.
Adopt a password manager
- 1password, Dashlane, and LastPass are great options.
- Most systems require you to have a password and you don’t want to memorize them all; password managers make it simple to maintain integrity of passwords.
- Password managers monitor online activity and often suggest passwords for you.
- Adopting a password manager is import, because people get lazy and that laziness can lead to hacking.
Create good passwords
- Use long passwords (8-10 characters in length).
- Include special characters, symbols, phrases.
- Make your password irrelevant, innocuous.
- Diversify them across accounts.
- Do not make them sequential.
- Avoid anniversaries, names, pet’s name, sports teams or other easy to find personal information.
- Often times, people are fighting an algorithm, not always a hacker.
Update security software with latest options
- Periodically, security software programs will prompt users to update, which may require a computer restart. People may defer these, causing their protection to become dated.
- Hackers are constantly innovating to outsmart security programs, so delaying updates can put people at risk. To ensure software stays up to date, set programs to automatically update or simply making sure to install the newest version when prompted.
- Most computers you have to set your security to automatically update.
- Most PCs have a defense (firewall) in it, but they still will prompt for updates.
- You may see the pop-up window asking you to update; don’t ignore it even if it means you have to restart your computer.