Author: Janessa Palmieri, Cyber Operations Freshman, DSU


Have a Strong Password

The longer the password, the better. Add symbols, numbers, and mix up lower and upper case letters. Try replacing letters with numbers that look like that letter. For example, the word “Lovely” could look like “10V31Y.” Do not use personal information in a password like your hometown or dog’s name. Do not reuse passwords, have a variety.

Do not make your password “Password”

Unfortunately, it is the most commonly used password [1].

Beware of Phishing Emails

Phishing is an attempt to collect information like passwords and credit card numbers by criminals pretending to be an authorized organization.

Check for misspelling; legit organizations can spell. Don’t give out sensitive information through email. Companies will not ask for social security or credit card information through email. Pay attention to the email address and look for small changes: Do not click sketchy hyperlinks; it could be Cross-Site Scripted (XSS), which executes malicious code in a web browser.

Review of Privacy Policy

The purpose of a Privacy Policy is for users to understand how a site or application collects, stores, and uses your information. Do not use sites or applications that are not thorough or trustworthy in the way they store data.

Be careful on Public Wi-Fi

When using public Wi-Fi, be aware of the risk of personal information being available from your devices. Do not use applications with access to bank accounts or any sensitive information on public networks.

Make Security Questions Tough to Answer

Do not make your security questions something someone else can answer. For example, A security question asking for your high school mascot can easily be found online.

Keep Software Up to Date 

The purpose of updating software is to patch up security issues such as minor bugs. Updates also improve the operation of the software, enhancing user experience.

Report Cyber Scams and Incidents 

The FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) accepts online Internet crime complaints from victims and from third parties to the complainant.