Deals will be made, contracts need to be signed, products have to be delivered, sometimes even on your off time. Use the Internet safely while you’re on the go this summer. Learn more about hotspots and mobile attacks to keep your company information safe.
Hotspots are a hacker’s paradise. While they are the quickest way to connect to the Internet on the go, Wi-Fi hotspots are generally unsecured. When selecting a hotspot, take a look at the choices available. Choose a connection with encryption if possible.
With most systems, like Windows 7, you can left click on the wireless network connections available and hover your mouse over the connection name to see details about the type of connection and security. Try to avoid connections that say “unsecured” if possible.
Only use passwords on websites that include an SSL key on the bottom right of the screen when using hotspots. SSL keys are an additional layer of protection to keep customers safe online. These certificates initiate a secure session between the browser and the company website. However, when browsing unsecured, keylogger programs can allow snoopers to record your passwords even on encrypted sites.
As a rule of thumb, save sensitive transactions like bill paying, accessing your bank account, sending confidential client information, or using a credit card online until you are sure you’re connected to a secure wireless network at home or the office.
FBI warns against Hotel Internet connections abroad. If you are considering a trip out of the country be aware of the dangers that lurk online. A recent release from the FBI reports malicious attacks targeting travelers abroad through pop-up windows while they are trying to connect to the Internet at their hotels. Travelers found infections linked to routine software updates that are generally safe. The FBI recommends all users exercise caution when updating software products while connected to a public connection. (www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/e-scams)
Pop-ups can be dangerous. In general, if a window pops-up when you’re surfing the Internet on a computer or mobile device, be sure to read the message in it’s entirety. Don’t click on anything you don’t recognize! Even if you are just closing the window.
Don’t use the red “x” to close a pop-up as there could be malicious software connected to this option. Always close suspicious windows by right clicking the window on the “task bar” and clicking “close” or use the “task manager” to end the program.
VPN’s are the best defense. If your company uses VPN or virtual private network connectivity, this is ultimately the best way to keep your company information and communications safe. This type of connection gives you a secure remote path to your company and allows you to take advantage of the security your organization already has in place.
Anyone trying to intercept information sent or received through a VPN connection would not be able to read any of the data communicated due to the high level of encryption on this type of network.
Update and security essential review. Before you head out of town, give us a call to review your laptop. We will setup a secure VPN, make sure all your programs are up-to-date, and check your computer for infections. This will give you a clean slate to work on the go.