In October, National Cyber Security Awareness Month highlights three indisputable facts about the Internet. First, it is an incredible resource that provides a world of opportunities for communication, transactions, entertainment and learning. Second, pursuing these activities comes with the risk of falling victim to digital offenders bent on separating you from your personal information, privacy, and money. Third, the methods are becoming increasingly more complex and continuous, so you must be more determined to thwart their efforts at every step.
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The good news is that you don’t have to defend your digital world on your own. Most online services now offer tools that can detect and deter potential scams and fraud before you even know they’re happening. Today, internet security is truly a team effort. You do your part on the main front, and your provider protects you on the network. Together, you are a great security force against online threats and schemes.
With this in mind, there are common sense practices you can take to overcome Internet threats and reduce your risk of being hacked, scammed, or scammed:
• protect your accounts with a strong password – seven or more characters, including a number and a symbol; Diversify passwords across accounts. For even better protection, consider a password manager like LastPass that generates and stores strong, unique passwords, helping you to securely log into any business website or app — meaning you can finally get away with post-application notice that are pinned to your screen with all your logins.
• Use two-factor authentication that generates a one-time code sent to your mobile device or email to confirm your identity.
• Always be vigilant, especially when opening emails or text messages that come from unknown senders or that come from a familiar source but appear to be closed. Beware of anything that asks you to click on a link to update private or financial information.
• Stay away from unsafe websites. If the URL doesn’t start with “https:” just say no.
• Don’t overshare personal information, or your whereabouts, on social media.
• Install antivirus software on your devices and run scheduled scans. Disconnect any device from your network that you suspect has been hacked.
If you follow these ‘golden rules’, the next smart thing you can do to reduce your online exposure – which doesn’t require a lot of heavy load – is to activate the online security features available through your ISP.
Cox customers can take advantage of Panoramic Wifi’s advanced security, a built-in service that provides an extra layer of protection for your home network with the following features:
• Monitoring of the connected device automatically extends to any device that connects to your home network wirelessly: phones, laptops, game consoles, cameras, etc.
• Continuous analysis of Wifi traffic, using advanced intelligence and machine learning to automatically detect and block suspicious activities in real time.
• Action alert dashboard that allows you to check the security status of the network at any time and informs you about digital security actions taken every day.
Advanced Security helps you avoid unintended access to malicious websites. It blocks remote access to smart devices from unknown or dangerous sources and monitors activity in real time to detect when devices are behaving in unusual ways that may indicate a network threat.
Advanced Security is included in the Panoramic Wifi service and can be accessed via the Panoramic Wifi app. Setup takes less than a minute and gives you control. You can also take advantage of the new Cox Internet Security Hub to learn how to stay safe in online situations. The center also provides guidance on getting the most out of Cox’s services as well as expert assistance for all your devices.
This October, you not only recognize Cyber Security Month, but celebrate it by rallying your online security team. Learn more at Cox Panoramic Wifi Advanced Security page.
author: Susan Annabel is Vice President of Public Affairs for Cox, Southwest District.
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