Simple IT security tips

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Tuesday April 9, 2013 at 9:00am

Whether you run PCs or Apple Macs in your business you will want to ensure that your IT security is up to scratch. Follow these simple tips to avoid the most obvious pitfalls.

Quick IT Security Tips

  • If you don't understand a warning message, say no and consult your IT support. It's easier to go back and say yes if you need to than be sorry and have to rebuild your machine.
  • Certificates: If you don't understand a website certificate message, say no and consult your IT support team. It is easier to go back and say yes if you need to than be sorry.
  • Antivirus: Running antivirus does not slow your computer down nearly as much as a virus does, so make sure you keep anti-virus software up to date and don’t be tempted to disable it because it keeps giving you security warnings, it’s doing so for a reason.
  • Back-up: Backing up your data may seem like a waste of time — until you spill coffee all over your laptop that is!
  • Passwords: Writing down your password around your desk is about as secure as leaving a £20 note lying on the dashboard of your car. Think how many people have access to your work space or could look over your shoulder while you work on the train, in a coffee shop or just about anywhere you might be working? Keep your passwords secure – and make sure you follow our tips for creating a strong password.
  • Always lock your computer (by pressing windows key and L) before walking away from it.

Apple Adds Two-Step Verification

Apple has finally updated their service to include the option of two-step verification. This requires the user to verify their identity using one of their chosen devices. Users who make active the option will be required to enter a four digit code they may receive via iMessage, along with the usual password.

According to Apple: "Turning on two-step verification reduces the possibility of someone accessing or making unauthorized changes to your account information at My Apple ID or making purchases using your account."

Setting up Apple two-step verification

Set up two-step verification at My Apple ID (appleid.apple.com):
- Select "Manage your Apple ID" and sign in.
- Select "Password and Security."
- Under Two-Step Verification, select Get Started and follow the on-screen instructions.

These are just some of the steps individual users can take to improve IT security. Business owners will want to have robust IT security policies and potential use a standard like ISO 27001 International Standard for Information Security to protect their wider business systems from security breaches and compromise or loss of valuable data.

Marcus Allen
Parker Management Consultants

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