Over 90 percent of people in the United States feel like their data is out of their control, and judging from the impression that the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation left on the world, it’s surely not going to be the last piece of privacy legislation that is issued. Still, will it be enough to urge certain governments and organizations to practice what they preach? The results could have long-lasting effects on businesses, as well.
Buckeye IT blog
Earlier this week, you may have seen the first part of this article, where we discussed how robocallers collect your information. Today, we continue our discussion on data privacy and what you can do to keep your organization and personal data safe.
Protecting your business’ data is no simple task. To make it as secure as possible, you’ll have to understand how personal data flows through online channels. We’re digging pretty deep with this one, so get ready for an informative and, if nothing else, interesting read. This topic is especially important in an age where Facebook and Google exist, but there are countless other threats to data privacy out there that we all experience on a regular basis--business or not.
If you’re not tech-oriented, the mere sight of a server room might be a lot to take in. With wires everywhere and mechanical boxes filled with moving parts, you’re looking at the life’s blood of your business and the heart that pumps it through your business’ veins. While proxy servers are a little different from your standard server, this doesn’t change the fact that you probably shouldn’t mess with it. What is a proxy server, and what does it do?
Every business (and every individual, for that matter) needs to be wary of Internet scams and other online tricks. This is because those scammers are wily and have many means of finding a user in a compromising position… or so they claim in a recent scam.
Secrets need to be protected. That’s why humans created cryptography. Cryptography can be traced back to around the time the pharaohs ruled Egypt, but today’s cryptography is a lot different than simple hieroglyph replacement. Cryptography used in the computing systems today is called encryption. For this week’s tech term we will look back at the history of encryption and how it is used today to facilitate data security and personal privacy.
Another eleventh-hour spending bill passed through the U.S. Congress and was signed into law on March 23, 2018. This time, however, there was a certain earmark that may work to erode individual privacy protection around the globe. The new law, called the Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data (or CLOUD) Act, amends the Stored Communications Act of 1986 and gives unelected American officials extensive powers over global digital privacy rights.
The holiday season is coming to a close, with meals shared and gifts opened. You may have even received a new gizmo or doodad that you’re looking forward to trying out. Not to burst your bubble, but there is unfortunately a chance that the gizmo you had hoped to get (or purchased for a loved one) may lead to a security breach.
The Equifax data breach has been a considerable issue for countless individuals, exposing sensitive information that could lead to identity theft and so much more. In response to this breach, some experts are recommending that consumers go as far as freezing their credit lines because of the potential for breaches. Well, it all comes down to a PIN--something that can be easily guessed by a hacker under the right circumstances.
Every October, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (CERT), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) join forces to drive cyber security awareness. Cybercrime is a constant threat to individuals and businesses, alike. In fact, the risk is so significant that the US government decided to step up and offer information and resources stressing the importance of cyber security and raise awareness on the best practices to utilize when protect your nonpublic information.
Security needs to be a priority for everyone involved with business. This has led to a rise in the use of solutions that will protect the security and privacy of the user and their systems. A very common, yet effective, means of securing your data is to use a virtual private network, or VPN.
With the explosive popularity of social networking, the Internet seems to be a less private place than ever. With both communication and cyber crime rising in commonality, online privacy seems to be turning into a less attainable goal than ever. However, for this week’s tip, we’ll review some of the tools out there that can help you fight for your right to privacy.
Ransomware, the malware that locks down its victim’s files until they pay up, has always been a frustrating issue to deal with. However, a recent mobile ransomware will make the issue a little more personal… by sharing the victim’s mobile browsing history.
Your identity has quite a lot of value, especially in the wrong hands. Security firm ZoneAlarm put together some numbers in 2011 concerning identity fraud, and it even shocked us. Let's talk about a few of these statistics and what it means.
First of all, what shocked us the most is that according to the FTC, in the United States, 9 million individuals have their identities stolen each year. Identity theft is a little different than identity fraud, however. Theft is when personal information is exposed and taken without permission. This is happening all the time by malicious software like spyware, but it can also happen when legitimate websites and services get infiltrated by cybercriminals. If a reputable online store (or even a database for a brick and mortar store) gets hacked into, your personal information can be stolen. That's identity theft.
Identity fraud is when that data is misused for financial gain. This is when things start to get very dangerous. In 2009, $56 billion dollars were accumulated by cyber criminals through identity fraud. The good news is in 2010 that number went down to "only" $37 billion. What does that mean to the average person? On average, victims of identity fraud had $4,841 dollars stolen per victim. Trouble is, the world has had to improve drastically to protect consumers from identity fraud. This means higher costs of doing business which then get reflected on prices of products and services. In other words, because of identity fraud, we all lose.
How does your data get stolen? There are plenty of ways, but here are a few popular methods:
- Hackers can pick up credentials via public Wi-Fi and public PCs.
- Credit Card Skimming - a process that involves your credit card data being stolen when your credit card is swiped at a standard ATM or credit card terminal.
- Selling or discarding used computer equipment that isn't properly wiped can expose personal information.
- Hackers can infiltrate networks and databases.
- Dumpster diving and paper mail theft.
- Malware and viruses
In almost half of reported identity theft cases, the victim knew the criminal.
What do you do if your identity is stolen?
Almost half of all reports of identity frauds are discovered by the user first, although banks and credit card companies have methods in place to stay on top of it as well. If your financial credentials are stolen, you need to contact your bank and/or credit card companies immediately, both by phone and in writing. You'll want to file a police report with details about where your identity was stolen, what you believe was or could have been stolen, and documented proof of the crime.
You don't want to risk identity fraud. Monitor your credit reports closely, shred sensitive mail and documents before throwing them away, and ensure your computers and network are running latest security updates and antivirus, as well as other security measures. For a complete review of your security, contact us at (888) 964-4648 and we will help pinpoint vulnerabilities and fill in the cracks before a costly event occurs.
Email is (and has been) a prime method of communication for businesses of all sizes. With email comes a whole slew of issues that are essentially synonymous with the technology; spam, information overload, phishing, and information privacy. Even Northwest Ohio small businesses that only do business locally are at risk of these issues. Personal email accounts are equally at risk. Employing proper precautions and practices whenever communicating via email is very important to prevent the risk of security compromises, monetary loss, and even legality issues.
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