Today’s homes are using technology in ways never before experienced. The conveniences are impressive, but these wonderful advances have also created the likelihood of a security breach.

Cyber Security Home

That means that now, in addition to locking doors and windows, homeowners also have to secure their home network’s connections.

These common-sense steps are recommended to ensure the safety of your family and your possessions, from the appliances to your security system.

Inside Your Home

The first step is to check your Wi-Fi setup. The router, or Wi-Fi Access Point, uses a password, and often it’s set by the installer. Change this to a new password that only you know, and keep that information in a safe place. Make sure no one can join your network without entering this password, and that your encryption is current, which at this writing is WPA2. If you have a lot of people using your network, you might want to set up a separate guest account if your router allows it, so you can limit the vulnerability.

The devices that use your Wi-Fi are the next step in security. Each one uses a password or PIN number, and each one of these should be unique, different for each device, and strong. Don’t use common phrases, birth dates, pet names or any passwords that have personal ties.

Computers should have a firewall and an up-to-date anti-virus program. Make sure that your software has the latest security updates and software patches installed.

When you visit websites, it’s easy to see if they are secure by looking at the web address. For example, if the address begins with “http://,” it is not a secure site. What you want to see is “https://” or “shttp://,” which tells you that the site has a higher level of security.

Outside Your Home

If your devices are operable through your smartphone, tablet or portable computer, your information can be exposed when you log on to free Wi-Fi at a coffee shop, motel or any public location. Social media sites, such as Facebook, have a lot of information available about you, so check your settings so that you are the one who decides who sees what. Make sure your children are also aware of the importance of discretion when posting.

Perhaps you share plugin devices, or flash drives. Have your security software scan for issues before you introduce it into your system.

Prepare for the Worst-Case Scenario

No one likes to imagine it, but the possibility of a breach is a real threat. You can mitigate the damage by making sure you have regular backups of important information, change passwords regularly, monitor your credit cards and bank accounts for suspicious activity. If the worst happens, contact your technology solutions company immediately to make sure the damage is contained.

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