“If you connect it, protect it.”

October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month and there’s no better time than now to focus on the very real tricks of online scammers as well the importance of taking proactive steps to remain safe both at home and in the workplace.

Consider this advice when it comes to passwords:

  • USE A LONG PASSPHRASE. Consider using the longest password or passphrase permissible. A news headline or book title, with capitalization and punctuation changes, work well.
  • DON’T MAKE THEM EASY TO GUESS. Don’t use your pet’s name or anything that would be easy to find on social media.
  • KEEP THEM PRIVATE. Don’t tell anyone your passwords and watch for attackers trying to trick you into revealing them through emails or calls.
  • UNIQUE ACCOUNT, UNIQUE PASSWORD. Each time you reuse a password it chips away at your security. Find easy to remember ways to customize a standard password for each new site.
  • DOUBLE YOUR LOGIN PROTECTION. Enable multi-factor authentication (MFA) to ensure that the only person that has access to that account is you. If MFA is an option, enable it by using your smartphone, an authenticator app, or a secure token—a small device that can hook onto your key ring.
  • USE A PASSWORD MANAGER. With one master password you can generate and retrieve passwords for every account you have, protecting your credit card and bank information as well as answers to security questions.

Learn more about internet safety and privacy through the National Cyber Security Alliance at staysafeonline.org.