October is Cyber Security Awareness Month - Protect Your Personal Information

Conducting business online is an every day occurrence for most people these days. Never provide personal information unless the site is secure which is evidenced by a URL beginning with https. If it is just http, your information is not encrypted and could be stolen over the network. In addition:

  • Secure your accounts: many  account providers now offer additional ways for you to verify who you are before you conduct business on their site. If offered, take advantage of it.  
  • Create strong passwords: combine capital and lowercase letters with numbers and symbols to create a more secure password. Never use single words that may be found in the dictionary. For more information on creating a secure password, see password guidelines.
  • Unique account, unique password: Don't use the same password for all of your accounts. Creating a separate password for each account will help thwart the cybercriminal.
  • Write it down and keep it safe: Everyone can forget a password. Keep a list that is stored in a secure location and not near your computer.
  • Own your online presence: Set privacy and security settings on websites to your comfort level for information sharing. It is okay to limit who you share information with. See the Internet self help Web browser section and Facebook security.

For more security awareness tips, please see security awareness.