Device protection critical to guard against viruses

Device protection critical to guard against viruses Device protection critical to guard against viruses

As more of us rely on our smartphones and devices to communicate and conduct everyday business such as banking and shopping, securing these devices becomes all the more important.

At minimum, your smartphones and personal computers should be patched regularly and protected with an up-to-date antivirus solution. Antivirus solutions should protect your devices from common malware or malicious software such as viruses, ransomware and spyware.

Viruses can come in many forms and may quickly spread from one device to another so it’s very important to prevent them from accessing your devices in the first place. Ransomware are malicious programs that block access to your files until you pay a ransom fee to its creator. Spyware runs hidden on your devices and can collect and share information about you without your consent.

There are some very good antivirus solutions for home and office use offered through renowned security companies such as F-Secure, McAfee, Norton, and Trend Micro to name a few. You can also access good, reasonably-priced antivirus solutions through your internet service provider, which is convenient as it eliminates paying a separate fee to another provider.

While device protection is critical, in my opinion, the best security is your own individual awareness when you’re online. Understanding that you need to be careful about what you click on when browsing websites, checking email, and installing programs is baseline knowledge that should be constantly reinforced at home and at the office.

Here are my top five recommendations to stay safe:

  • Use up-to-date antivirus protection.
  • Think before you click.
  • Use a password manager and strong passphrases. Do not use “12345678” or “Password#1.”
  • Turn on two-factor authentication whenever possible.
  • Stay current on software updates.

Tony Dow serves as senior manager of security services operations at Hawaiian Telcom. Reach him at tony.dow@hawaiiantel.com.

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