Three Key Steps to Secure PC Software

Secure pc software is essential to protecting your computer, mobile device and data from hackers. Hackers, also referred to as cybercriminals, snoop around your computer for a variety reasons. They could steal and alter or erase information you consider important. Hackers have malicious intentions, unlike other thieves who may make use of stolen items to fulfill legitimate needs. They are most interested in unauthorized access to your sensitive information, and often before you know there’s been a problem.

Passwords, a security program and a firewall are the three essential steps to secure your computer software. If you follow these best practices, it is less likely that your computer will be compromised by hackers or malware (software that encrypts data and demands payment for its unlocking).

Change the name of your administrator account. Be sure to choose a password that is strong and contains upper- and lowercase numbers, letters and computer symbols. Avoid using a password with a shorter length, like 1234, because hackers can use automated tools to break easy-to-guess passwords in minutes.

Update your operating system and other programs. The majority of software updates include security fixes to help protect against hackers. Install all patches, and turn on automatic updates if you have them, to decrease the amount of time you’re vulnerable to hackers.

If you have an laptop or any other portable device, make sure the drive is encrypted when it’s not in use. This is particularly important for UF students. Windows allows you to enable encryption by clicking Settings > Update and Security > Device encryption. This will protect your entire internal drive as well as most external drives, such as SD cards.

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