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Best practices to safeguard your data in 2020

July 23, 2020

No matter what type of device you are using, finding the best methods of safeguarding your data is of the utmost importance. Indeed, given that almost 60 million Americans have been affected by cyber-security-related crimes, such as identity theft, we can no longer afford to ignore this matter. Moreover, since experts assert that up to 50% of all global data breaches will occur in the United States by 2023, Americans need to play catch up on uncovering and creating the best methods of safeguarding our data or suffer the consequences. With that in mind, the following is an overview of the best practices to safeguard your data, no matter which device you may be using.

Common End-User Mistakes

Before we delve into the best practices of safeguarding your data regardless of the device you are using, let’s first take a look at some of the most common end-user mistakes that can cause cybersecurity issues.

  • Improper Passwords: One of the top end-user mistakes is creating improper passwords. By creating passwords that are too easy or reusing the same passwords over and over, this makes it much simpler for a cyber hacker to view, access, and steal your data.
  • Leaving Devices Unlocked/Unattended: Another highly common end-user mistake is leaving your devices unlocked and/or unattended. This makes it much easier for random parties to access your information when you’re not paying attention.
  • Failing to Properly Backup Data: One major end-user mistake is failing to properly back up data. While this is not a good idea for information that is especially sensitive, backing up your data is the best way to safeguard your data when device failure occurs.
  • Using Public Networks: Additionally, another common mistake is the use of public networks. Given that remote work is on the rise, many employees are now able to essentially work anywhere they wish. When using random public networks, you are always putting your system and data at risk.
  • Failing to Destroy Old Hard Drives: Yet another common end-user mistake is failing to destroy old hard drives. Although many people seem to believe that you can simply scrub or clean the hard drives before disposing of them, this common mistake only puts companies at risk. Data can still be retrieved from old hard drives unless it’s destroyed before being discarded.

Best Prices of Safeguarding Your Data

Now that we know more about the most common end-user mistakes, let’s take a look at some of the best practices for safeguarding your data.

  • Always Install Updates: Although many people seem to view updates as annoying and unnecessary, these updates are actually created to keep your device optimally functional as well as well protected. No matter what type of device you may be using, always install the updates in a timely fashion.
  • Never Leave Devices Unattended: Given that many hackers gain access to devices that are left unattended, you must be careful to never leave your device unattended when you are in the presence of others. Make sure that you are either locking up your devices or taking them with you when there is a potential for someone else to attempt to gain entry to your network using a device that you have left unattended.
  • Steer Clear of Phishing Scams: One major way that many devices become compromised is that the user grants access unknowingly. There are plenty of phishing scams in which people text, call, or email pretending to be representatives of credible organizations to gain access to your information. Therefore, you must always be careful when you are giving out personal information of any kind. If you cannot verify who the person is and where they are contacting you from, never share any personal information whatsoever.
  • Stay on Top of Passwords: Given that one of the most common phishing scams involves gaining access to passwords and using these passwords to gain access to various apps and accounts, you must not only be sure that you are picking passwords that are difficult to guess, but also that you are changing your passwords regularly (about every 1-2 months). Additionally, if you believe your information has been compromised, change your passwords immediately.
  • Be Careful of Downloads: Moreover, you must always be mindful of the types of links you are downloading and from where. Corrupt files can compromise your system and allow hackers to gain access to it for phishing purposes. Only download files from sites that are reputable and if you are ever not sure about the source of a file, steer clear.
  • Mobile-Specific Safety Tips: Although many tips are applicable to all devices, there are a few safety tips that are specific to mobile devices only. For instance, you should only be downloading apps from reputable sources (such as Google Play, and the Apple Store). Moreover, you should always use reputable loss/theft tools such as Find My iPhone and Android Device Manager to keep your device as safe and secure as possible. Lastly, many devices offer options for data encryption. Be sure to search for them if you are storing or sending personal data with your cell phone.

Data Recovery Solutions

Although suffering a cybersecurity breach is far from ideal, there are plenty of services that can help you recover from these dismal circumstances. For instance, some such services are as follows:

  • Hard Drive Recovery: If you are suffering from hard drive issues as the result of a cyberattack, physical damage, power surge data, and more, hard drive recovery is an option. Hard drive recovery services can help you by restoring files that were lost from the hard drives of servers, laptops, desktops, and other systems that rely on hard drives in order to function.
  • RAID Recovery: If you have lost your files and data as the result of a RAID storage issue, a RAID recovery team may be able to help you retrieve those files.
  • Flash Media Recovery: Although some people seem to consider flash media issues to be fairly minuscule, these failures actually cause millions of dollars worth of losses each year. Flash media recovery can fix an array of issues such as heat and fluid damage, bad connectors, virus infection, accidental deletion, and much more.
  • Mobile Device Recovery: Lastly, there are various options in terms of recovering data from cell phones, tablets, and other mobile devices. If your mobile device has been compromised, there is an array of options to help get you back up and running in no time.

Overall, safeguarding your data is a task that should be treated with the utmost importance. No matter if you are using your devices for work, personal projects, or a mixture of the two, there is a wide variety of services that can help you quickly recover and get back to business as usual.