Let me start off by saying and I quote "As responsible parents and or adults we can no longer rely on technology providers to protect the integrity of our personal data”. Let that sink in for a moment... What does this mean? Simply put if you are someone who:
Surfs the web
Pays bills online
Interacts with any type of Social Media
Stores documents, photos, or any other types of media
YOU WILL HAVE TO BECOME YOUR OWN CYBERSECURITY SPECIALIST!!!
As a user onboard the world wide web information super highway your personal digital universes expand exponentially, from email to streaming, shopping to social media the choices are endless. With this in mind controlling who, how and what access our data and digital identities has become more of a necessity now than ever before.
Large businesses and major corporations have a team of Cybersecurity Specialist that make sure all of the digital assets of that company are secured and protected. Now I'm not saying that you have to go out and take classes on Cybersecurity or that you should spend thousands upon thousands of dollars to pay a Cybersecurity Company to protect your digital foot print. What I am saying is that as users and consumers we must all learn to manage the security, data and access to our personal devices and digital lifestyle.
As 2020 progresses people who use the internet will shift from just being consumers of data and digital services, to managers of their own digital empires. These digital empires are filled with all types of smart devices ranging from:
Personal digital assistants (Alexa, Google, Siri)
Smart home, IOT devices (Thermostats, garage door openers, Smart lights, etc.)
These smart devices will need rebooting, routine operating system updates that require updates, passwords that need to be managed, and a constant monitor of the security health of these devices.
If you don't think this applies to you or you believe that you’re not in this category, look around. According to folks over at Gartner, the number of connected devices will reach over 20 billion by the end of year 2020. PEOPLE that's this year... What that means is there will be twice as many digital devices as there are human beings by the end of this year. Oh yeah one more thing, this upward trend is only going to continue. Folks this isn't just happening in faraway countries, or in corporate data centers and or up in the "cloud". It's happening in our homes.
Don't believe me. Stop right here and think about it. I want you to take a mental count of your home. (Home not just house so you folks that live in apartments can do this as well.) Look around. Do you have more digital devices or family members? I am almost willing to bet that your answer is digital devices. Now ask yourself who takes care of your digital menagerie? If your answer is no one, you might have problems. When was the last time you?
Ran updates on your computer?
Ran a full virus scan?
Checked your devices for Malware?
Is your data being backed up?
When was the last time you checked to see if your backup is working?
When was the last time you updated the firmware on your wireless router?
When was the last time you checked your online cloud storage to make sure that you weren't sharing data with people that should not have access to your data?
You might be thinking that providers like the cable company or the phone company with their "Triple Play" service is responsible for this and is taking care of it. I hate to tell you they are not. But don't worry. All hope is not lost. There are new laws giving more responsibly, and power, to consumers that will help to mandate that any “connected device” that is being sold in 2020 and beyond has to have a unique password. So what is a “connected device”? A connected device is “any device that connects directly or indirectly to the internet and has an IP or Bluetooth address”. In some states legislators are focusing on devices that are purchased for in home use. Essentially any device or object that connects to the internet either directly or indirectly and is used for personal, family or household business. These laws will influence the future of devices and gadgets that are built for the home.
In the State of California, The California Consumer Privacy Act was put in effect January 2nd 2020. The Consumer Privacy Act allows consumers to see all the information a company may have gathered about them, as well as a list of third party companies that their data was shared with. This law will allow consumers to sue if their privacy is violated, even if there is no breach allowing consumers to watch over their own data. This is AWESOME!!!
Now for the naysayers who think this is not a big deal let me remind you of a cyberattack that took place in 2016. Hundreds of thousands of home and office devices were remotely hacked by taking advantage of the device default passwords that were left unchanged. This cyberattack allowed a hacker group to cause a distributed denial of service attack that took down several websites in the United States and Europe.
So what does this all boil down to? Advanced security measures must be used. Things that you should consider putting into practice like:
Virtual private networks (VPN)
Managed domain name services (DNS)
Patch management services
Managed artificial intelligent security
The tools that are required to protect your data is only growing as are the skills required for personal digital protection.
Companies invest a lot of time and money to protect their data. Yearly, if not quarterly, reviews of online security will be performed by a cybersecurity team. Depending on how proactive or how paranoid they are. During these reviews companies will typically delete outdated accounts, remove access and sharing privileges from cloud services and update passwords.
In 2020 you need to start making cybersecurity and Data Protection a big priority in defense of your home and family!!!
Change your computer password
Change your Wi-Fi password
Change your router password
Change your mobile phone pin or password
Change your email password
Change you passwords to all of your social media accounts
Run updates on your computer
Update your Wi-Fi and router firmware
Run a full virus scan on your computer
Check your cloud service accounts and remove access to those who no longer need access
Check your data backups on your devices
This is just scratching the surface. To learn more about securing your data and digital foot print contact Intelligent Automation at (888) 711-4521 or send us an email to Sales@Intelamation.com.
Remember a data breach can happen in minutes and can cost you a lifetime.