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6 Tips To Create A Password Policy For Your Organization 

Is your organization protected by a strong password policy? If not, you should take a look at some of the tips outlined in this post to ensure that does not become an issue for you.Password policies are set in place to protect users from identity theft and to make it more difficult for hackers, cyber criminals and other foul players to get into your network.

Password policies can vary from organization to organization, but certain password rules should be universal for all organizations. Let’s take a look at six important steps for creating a strong password policy.

The importance of not using personal information in password security cannot be stressed enough; we’ve all heard the stories. By using personal information for your passwords, you’re allowing bad actors to guess and hack into that one account (and then everything else associated with it). This isn’t the only thing that should be kept in mind, though! If your password policy is based around easier guidelines, people are less likely to follow it or remember it. On the other hand, passwords with complicated twists are more difficult for bad actors to guess – but can prove unrealistic for everyday users trying to remember which password to use. When creating a password policy, the most important thing is to create something that will be followed by users and hard for bad actors to guess. Luckily, it’s not as complicated as you might think. Here are some tips on how you can create a strong password policy:

Do Not Use Personal Information

Using personal information as your password is never a bright idea when it comes to keeping your data safe. Instead of using something like your last name, be creative and use a system of complex numbers and letters that is harder to guess. Passwords should only allow the use of alphanumeric characters and special symbols; never include details such as a user’s name, birth date or other personal information in their password.

Do Not Use Real Words

Instead of using real words commonly found in daily life, think of new ways to keep your information safe. For example, instead of using a password such as ‘orange’ try something like ‘85ango4e.’ The more complex the better.

Create Longer Passwords

This can be done by using pass-phrases instead of passwords – this means long sentences known only to your user, such as “My most beloved dog is named Rusty!.” Passwords must be at least 12 characters long, and the password must include at least one number and symbol; more is better (i.e., more symbols, numbers, uppercase/lowercase letters).

Modify Easy-To-Remember Phrases

If your passwords are simple phrases such as ‘golden hour’ or ‘beach day’ you are going to need to think about making some more complex passwords to keep your information safe.

Don’t Write Them Down

Never write down your passwords, either on paper or digitally – this way, if your device is ever lost or stolen, your passwords are still protected.

Change Passwords Frequently 

Change passwords on a regular basis. Passwords must be changed at least once every three months for all users (not more than once every two weeks).

When establishing a password policy within your organization, it’s important you communicate all information regarding user access and credentials with employees, so they are aware of their roles and responsibilities. Failure to do so could lead to a major security incident within your organization, putting its data at risk for being compromised.

The goal of any good password policy is to ensure the best possible security measures are in place across the entire organization; if employees understand what they’re supposed to be doing with regards to passwords, you can keep your data safe.

It’s important for organizations of all types and sizes to establish a strong password policy framework, so that employees know how they should be handling their credentials. If users don’t understand what is expected of them with regards to their IT access credentials, it’s very likely they won’t do the right thing. As a result, this could potentially lead to a major security incident within your organization, putting its data at risk for being compromised by hackers.

Always remember, the more complicated and difficult a password policy is, the harder it will be for users to remember. Instead, create a policy that is easy to remember and difficult to guess. Don’t forget to contact Bayshore Interactive today for all of your I.T. needs.

Tips To Be Cyber Smart    

What does being cyber smart mean? Being cyber smart means that you are able to use the internet safely, securely, and productively. Using technology is important in our daily lives. Whether it is at home or school, computers are everywhere. Students might be using technology more than adults! However people of all ages can be cyber smart.

If you want to be cyber smart, you need to learn how to protect yourself online.

Beware of Imposters

There are a lot of scammers on the internet, so it’s important to be aware of imposters. It’s important to be aware of who you are talking to online. Most importantly, don’t give out your personally identifiable information. There are a lot of people on the internet that will get personal information from you under the pretense of “needing” it in order for something to work (such as asking for your credit card number).

If you’re on Facebook, don’t accept every friend request. There are a lot of people online that will befriend everybody and then later ask them for money or personal information. A lot of the time they’ll pretend to be somebody else and start talking to their friends online with no direct way of verifying who they are.

Never give out your credit card information, especially on unsecured websites. There are lots of tricks online that will capture your bank information and steal money off of you. One trick is pretending to be somebody else during the transaction process (such as a pizza place). A company might offer to deliver a pizza for you, but the bill will be hundreds of dollars.

Stay Alert

It is important to always be vigilant on the internet. Cyber security can help you stay safe online. Always make sure that your passwords are secure, and you should use two factor authentication, which requires two forms of identification to log in during extra sensitive activities like banking.

You should always read the terms of service before you sign up for a site or application, because it will tell you what data is being collected and how it will be used. You should delete all the cookies on your computer after each browsing session because they are trackers that look at your activity to recommend sites suited to your interests.

Never open emails from unknown sources because they could be phishing scams. Phishing scams trick you into providing sensitive information by posing as a trustworthy website, for example by asking for your username and password which can then be used to access that site. If you get an email that says your account will be closed, do not click the link because it may look like a phishing scam but it is actually legit and you should change your password.

Safeguard Information

To stay safe online, you must first know how to defend yourself. What makes you vulnerable online? Your email account is one of the easiest ways for someone to access your personal information. They do not even need your password; these cybercriminals can hack into your email without permission, which means they could also steal all of your contacts’ information.

Remember, you are your own first line of defense. You can protect against cybercriminals by making yourself harder to contact, deleting all emails that you do not recognize, and making sure your email account is secure.

Understand online safety rules . It is everyone’s responsibility to be safe on the internet. What are some good practices for staying safe online? Never share personal information on message boards or chat rooms. Do not download email attachments from users you do not recognize, even if it appears to be from somebody you know. Passwords protect every device you use for work or school, whether it is a phone or computer.

Do your research . If you are using the internet at work or school, you should know about all the risks that are associated with any online activity. If they offer you a gift card just for filling out a survey, this is usually a sign of fraud. Remember that if it is too good to be true, then it probably is not true.

If you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be your grandson or granddaughter, and they say they are in trouble with the law, do not send them money. Do some research on the Internet to find out if their story is true. You might be able to confirm with other family members that your grandchild was involved in this kind of incident by looking up news articles about it. If you cannot find any information, contact law enforcement and the hospital where they claimed to have been arrested. This will ensure your safety and that your money will not go to someone who uses it for illegal activities.

Never Share Passwords

It is very important that you protect yourself while using the Internet. Your personal information, passwords, and credit card numbers should be guarded at all times. Use strong passwords to access all of your accounts. Be careful when typing in passwords; don’t allow anyone to see what you’re typing. Also, avoid public places when paying for items with a debit card or credit card. Be aware of how much personal information you are sharing on social media platforms as well. You should never accept friend requests from people that you don’t know personally as they could end up stealing your identity and opening accounts in your name without your permission.

Never share your passwords or PINs with anyone. If you tell somebody your password, they can access everything that is linked to it such as your email and bank account. Even if someone thinks you’re just letting them borrow your phone for a moment, they can hold onto it and start entering their own information.*

You should always use the strongest security measure when entering your password online. Using numbers, special characters, and capital letters in unique combinations is what you need to do. Numbers should be placed in the beginning or end of the word, not in the middle where they can easily be guessed. Also, it is important that you use different passwords for the various accounts that you have. If someone guesses one of your passwords, they can access other accounts that could be harmful to you.

The Internet is a powerful tool, but it can be used against you. You have to take precautions and protect yourself from cyber criminals who can hack into your personal information and steal your identity. Contact Bayshore to keep you and your company safe before catastrophe strikes.

Top 6 Industries Most Vulnerable to Cyber Attacks

Businesses and organizations around the world are increasingly aware that digital security is a top priority, and hackers and cybercriminals always seem to be one step ahead. The modern age we live in makes it ever more difficult to protect data – especially when you consider Cloud computing – and there’s no question as to whether or not your business needs additional security measures in place.

The problem is that many businesses are not exactly sure where to start when it comes to protecting themselves from hackers and cybercriminals. Fortunately, there are plenty of industries out there that are more vulnerable than others, so if you run one of these types of business, it’s important that you pay extra attention to digital security.

 

Small Businesses

Small businesses are typically the most vulnerable to cyber attacks. These companies may not have the necessary resources or security measures in place to defend themselves against criminals looking to find an easy way into a system. They may also store large amounts of valuable data that, if obtained by hackers, could result in greater financial losses than those sustained during a single instance of a small business closing.

Health Care

The healthcare industry has been a frequent target of cyber criminals. In recent years, several companies have reported being hacked, resulting in large-scale theft of medical records containing sensitive personal information. Many times, this information is sold on the black market to others who use it for medical fraud. With no way of telling if the records are even accurate, hospitals operate blind when it comes to determining patient eligibility.

Governments

One of the most vulnerable sectors to cyber attacks are government agencies. The information that these agencies hold is highly valuable to both hackers and foreign governments. Although federal departments have extensive systems in place to monitor the flow of data, there are still many loopholes in cyberspace that can potentially be used by hackers or other foreign agents to circumvent these measures. Furthermore, most government employees are not prepared to deal with attacks aimed at their personal devices. These devices usually contain a large amount of personal information that can be collected and used against them or their employer.

Financial Institutions

The finance sector is the second most likely group to come under attack from cybercriminals. Cyber attacks are not just affecting big banks and financial institutions; examples of this include the 2011 attack on RBS Worldpay and the more recent attack on Citigroup. The biggest problem is that these companies store lots of data, which makes them a target for hackers and ransomware attacks. Furthermore, banks and other financial institutions are often on the forefront of using new technologies. This makes them more susceptible to attacks involving new technology, such as malware that uses bluetooth beacons on mobile devices. It is clear that this sector needs to develop better ways of protecting themselves from cyber attacks.

Education

The education sector is considered to be one of the most vulnerable to cyber attacks. Cybercriminals see schools as easy targets because they are not prepared for cyber attacks and lack the knowledge in defending themselves against these types of criminals looking to steal student information. Schools do not have a dedicated IT staff member specifically assigned to protecting the school’s data, and often their technology budget helps fund other activities such as sports and teachers’ salaries.

Energy Companies

The energy and utility sector is considered to be one of the most vulnerable to cyber attacks. Cybercriminals view these companies as easy targets because they are not prepared for cyber attacks and lack the knowledge in defending themselves against these types of criminals looking to steal information from their computers. Energy and utility companies do not have a dedicated IT staff member specifically assigned to protecting the company’s data, and often their technology budget helps fund other activities.

As technology advancements allow more people to easily obtain the knowledge on how to conduct a successful cyber attack, more and more businesses are feeling the effects of cyber attacks. While many businesses have dedicated IT staff members specifically assigned to protecting their company’s data, they often lack the awareness or knowledge needed in defending themselves against these types of criminals looking to steal information from their computers. It is important for businesses to understand the enemy they are facing when it comes to cyber attacks, and how to keep critical information available when under attack. Protect your business and contact Bayshore today!

 

The Future of Cyber Security Is Autonomous

In the last few years, cybersecurity has been a hot topic among major defense contractors and government agencies. However despite being neglected in decades past, cybercrime is rapidly becoming more dangerous than terrorism. With the proliferation of cheap hacking tools and custom malware infections, small-time players can carry out attacks which used to only be possible by state actors with deep pockets. This has prompted the development of new defense systems that are designed to counteract these threats – but can they succeed?

Advances in technology are expected to bring about even greater changes in the coming years. Artificial intelligence, smart machines, and other innovations will change how wars are fought. But while some military leaders have expressed concerns over this potential paradigm shift, others are more optimistic. Many of them are taking advantage of these advancements to create new security tools that will surely be vital in the future.

But at what point does technology stop being a defense tool and start becoming an offensive weapon? As cyberwarfare becomes increasingly automated, it could happen sooner than anyone realizes.

Ransomware Defense

Cyber security has come a long way in recent years, with AI becoming more valuable than ever before. The future of cyber security is autonomous; instead of waiting to respond to attacks after they happen, it may be possible for computers to predict cyber crime behavior before it actually takes place. This could include everything from predicting the location and time of the attack to precisely identifying the origin of the threat.

Autonomous cyber security systems could then be used to defend against these attacks before they happen, making computer systems more resilient and lowering risk for all involved. Even if an autonomous system is not able to prevent every cyber crime incident from happening, it can help reduce their frequency while increasing detection rates, which is still a big upgrade over current reactive security measures.

Currently, many companies are taking their first steps in this direction using machine learning algorithms to establish baselines of normal behavior in order to then flag any activity that deviates from that norm. For example, if an employee typically logs into their financial software between 9am and 5pm on Wednesdays from their desktop computer, an algorithm may determine that anything deviating from this behavior could be a threat. If the behavior indicates a threat, the company can then take proactive measures to address it before any harm is done.

Technical Account Management

Technical Account Management (TAM) can be described as an approach to securing software. It is a process that incorporates security assessments, recommendations, and compliance with industry standards into the development life cycle of a given application. TAM is designed to ensure that all infrastructure components are adequately protected by identifying weaknesses in design or implementation that could potentially allow unauthorized access to an application or the underlying information systems.

Cloud Data Backup 

The first step for any business looking to improve or implement their cyber security plan is an assessment of how current policies and systems protect their information assets. Every company has different goals, priorities, and tolerance for risk, which means no single solution will work for everyone. A better cyber security solution helps you choose the right cloud data backup plan that fulfills your business needs.

As cyber security problems expand and new vulnerabilities are discovered, a paradigm shift in how we manage this data is necessary to minimize risk. For example, the Equifax hack compromised 145 million Americans personal information. In this event, these individuals had their social security numbers stolen from a central database where they were stored. In order to combat such data breaches, a new paradigm for cloud data storage is required. The amount of data being collected from our smartphones, credit cards, and other personal devices is absurdly large and will only continue to grow exponentially. In order to manage the growing collection of user digital footprint, researchers are looking into a new type of database that can securely store an individual’s information without a central authority. Specifically, researchers are working on a decentralized database that will have no singular point of failure and where control is distributed among the user network. This paradigm shift in cloud storage would ensure that our digital footprint is never lost to a single hack again.

Next Generation Endpoint Monitoring

Endpoint security products monitor activity on endpoints by scanning files and communications to detect known patterns that may indicate suspicious behavior. They also monitor endpoint configuration and system settings for unauthorized changes. Endpoint security products can be installed on a user’s machine or a server to protect the entire network infrastructure.

New research by the Ponemon Institute shows that organizations that invest in endpoint monitoring and machine learning-based solutions to gain at least a basic level of protection against cyber attacks, see fewer targeted email attacks than those companies without any form of security. The companies using these types of products were attacked on average 3 times compared with the companies that didn’t use endpoint monitoring or machine learning-based solutions, which were attacked an average of eight times.” 

While this is bad news for companies without these products, it highlights the importance of using technological advances in cyber security alongside other best practices.

Endpoint security products monitor activity on endpoints by scanning files and communications to detect known patterns that may indicate suspicious behavior. They also monitor endpoint configuration and system settings for unauthorized changes. Endpoint security products can be installed on a user’s machine or a server to protect the entire network infrastructure.

Real Time Network Monitoring

Today, the world of cyber security is dominated by humans fighting against machines. No longer can we rely on  defending  our computer systems; what we need now is the  ability to  anticipate  our opponents’ next move, and that is what autonomous systems provide.

Autonomous systems are only the beginning of how artificial intelligence will change cyber security. First, real time network monitoring using neural networks can be used to identify threats faster than our opponents can use them. For example, recently Google revealed its latest project: a “forced” neural network, which the company claims is so effective that it can identify malware files that were trained on for months and have never been seen. And if we take into consideration how popular software-as-a-service solutions are becoming, it’s clear that this technology will soon spread throughout cyber security.

Finally, artificial intelligence provides completely new ways to defend our systems against cyber attacks. For example, autonomous systems are being devised that will identify intrusions into company networks quickly and stop them before any damage can be done.

The future of cyber security is autonomous systems that will learn from their mistakes and constantly adapt to new threats. Contact Bayshore Interactive and stay ahead of the curve with A.I. powered security.