Monday, October 28th, 2013
You lock your doors when you park your car. You look both ways before crossing the street. You wash your hands before you eat (we hope). In everyday life, we try to be safe. Whether you publish a blog or not – are you doing enough to be equally as safe online?
In the wake of recent hackings at the Washington Post, Time, CNN and others, we wanted to share some very simple, yet critical, security measures with the Blogads community.
To recap, CNN Money reported that hackers attacked Outbrain, a service that the news outlets use to recommend links to readers. The affected links re-directed people to the Syrian Electronic Army website. A secondary hack at the Washington Post occurred through a sophisticated Phishing attack.
What is phishing?
Phishing is the act of attempting to acquire information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details (and sometimes, indirectly, money) by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.
How can I avoid taking the bait?
- Guard against spam
- Communicate personal info only via phone or secure sites
- Don’t click, download or open files from unknown senders
- Never email personal or financial information
- Beware of links that ask for personal info
- Beware of pop-ups
- Protect your computer with a firewall, spam filter, anti-virus and anti-spyware software
- Check your online accounts regularly
For additional phishing prevention, read on!
Recognizing a phishing scam is just one fight, not the entire online war. Follow these simple exposure recommendations and you will be on your way to a safer online experience:
- Increase Password Strength. 15% of consumers use their first name in the password. Don’t add to that problem, learn how to be password secure.
- Notice Secure Sites. A website starting with “Https” rather than “Http” means that there is an internet security protocol installed on that site, and any information you enter will be transmitted through encrypted code.
- Beware of Public Networks. Use proper firewalls when browsing on open Wi-Fi, and never visit sites that you wouldn’t want others to see, such as online shopping or banking sites.
For all WordPress users, here are a few additional steps to keep your blog safe:
- Delete the “Admin” Username… Create a new one
- Use a Strong User Password
- Update to the Latest WordPress Version
- Back Up Your Blog Database
- Limit Login Attempts With a Plugin
WordPress users can take a deeper dive into the tips here!
Got questions or comments? Email us for more safety tips!