Three Key Steps to Secure PC Software

Secure PC software is crucial to safeguarding your mobile device, computer and your data from hackers. Hackers, also referred as cybercriminals, hack your computer for many reasons. They may steal or alter, or even delete information you consider important. Hackers are malicious, unlike other thieves who steal items for legitimate purposes. They are more concerned with unauthorized access to your personal information, and often before you know there’s been a problem.

Passwords, a virus prevention program and a firewall are the three primary steps to protect your computer software. If you follow these basic best practices your computer will be much less likely to be hacked by malware, hackers or ransomware (software that encrypts your information and demands payment to unlock it).

Change the name of the administrator account. Be sure to select an extremely secure password that includes lower and uppercase numbers, letters, and computer symbols. Do not use a short password like 1234, as hackers can employ automated tools to crack passwords that are easy to guess in just a few minutes.

Keep your operating system (OS) and other software up to date. Most software updates contain security fixes to protect against hackers. Install all patches, and enable automatic updates when available, to minimize the time you are vulnerable to hackers.

If you have an laptop or any other portable device, ensure that the drive is secure when it’s not being used. This is especially crucial for UF Students. Windows allows you to enable encryption by clicking Settings > Update and Security > Device encryption. This will secure the entire internal drive, as well as all external drives, such as SD cards.

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