Security is here to stay, and it is not a set it and forget it solution. Bad actors are always developing new tools and are enhancing their skills daily, so you must remain diligent to keep yourself safe! Think of your Cyber Security in the same manner that you view the physical security of your home. You lock your house, set your alarm, and feed the guard dog to keep your house secure. You have enhanced the security of your house as needed (Ring doorbells). Take the same approach when securing your data!

Here are a few things that you should include in your home Cyber Security systems. If you have any questions regarding any items on the list, please reach out to River Run by calling 414-228-7474 or emailing Paul@River-Run.com.

20 Home Cyber Safety Tips:

  1. MULTIFACTOR AUTHENTICATION:  Make sure Multifactor (MFA) or 2Factor Authentication (2FA) is activated for all remote services, especially financial services. This provides a second level of security when logging into websites.

  2. END POINT PROTECTION:  Make sure you have a mainstream (not free) Antivirus Solution (End Point Protection) running on your home machines.

  3. PASSWORD – CHANGES:  Change your passwords for your accounts on a regular basis. Quarterly is preferred.

  4. PASSWORD – UNIQUE:  Use a unique password for each website or service you access. This decreases the risk of giving access to multiple sites if one password is compromised.

  5. PASSWORD – COMPLEXITY:  Make sure the passwords are a minimum of 8 characters and use symbols, numbers, and capitalization.

  6. PASSWORD – MANAGEMENT TOOL:  There are secure services that allow you to store all your passwords securely and can ease access to site you use on a regular basis.

  7. REJECT AUTOFILL:  When connecting to websites, do not allow the sites to autofill in usernames and passwords even if you are on a “registered” machine.

  8. CREDIT MONITORING SERVICE:  Subscribe to a monitoring service such as LifeLock or put a “lock” on your credit at the main credit reporting companies. Contact each of the main credit reporting organizations to find out how their services work and understand the costs.​​​

  9. UNSOLICITED CALLS (SPAM CALLS):  On your smart phone – Ignore calls that are marked as Potential Spam or Unknown. (Example: A prerecorded message states your Amazon package is coming to you and they ask you to hit a specific number.)

  10. EMAIL – CLEANUP:  Clean out your email trash on a regular basis (weekly is best).

  11. EMAIL – CREATE A SPAM ACCOUNT:  Set up a “SPAM” email account that is separate from your “real” email address. Use the SPAM email account when registering on any websites you are not familiar with. This will cut down on the amount of SPAM messages, especially when the sites sell your email to other organizations.

  12. EMAIL – SUSPICIOUS:  When in doubt throw it out, and do a complete deletion so it does not sit in your inbox (Control + Delete for Outlook email).

  13. SNAIL MAIL – SECURE MAILBOX:  Use a locked mailbox even at your home. Bad actors gain a lot of information about people by stealing physical mail. They use this information to gain access to your cyber data.

  14. AWARENESS & SUSPICION:  Be aware of “who” is asking for your data and be suspicious and selective as to what information you provide.

  15. WIRELESS IN HOME:  Make sure your wireless services are password protected! Do not publish the Wi-Fi password. Have a separate guest account or kids’ account.

  16. UPDATES:  Apply all updates (patches) for your smart phones, wireless devices, cameras, and applications you use.

  17. APPLICATION – DOWNLOADS:  Be selective of the applications you download to all devices. Make sure the applications are mainstream and safe! Some games can create a high-level security risk.

  18. APPLICATION – CLEANUP:  If you are not using an application regularly, delete the application. Old applications that are not up to date can become a gateway into your accounts.

  19. GAMING MACHINES:  Avoid using your “gaming” machine when accessing financial websites or accessing your business from home. Gaming machines usually have a lot of programs, and the machines may or may not be secure.

  20. CONSTANT LEARNING:  Take time to stay current on security tools and methods by visiting trusted security advisors such as the River Run website or subscribing to the River Run LinkedIn account for up-to-date information.

Prepared by Paul Riedl, Jr., CEO of River Run



Share this article