As Cybersecurity Awareness Month (October) comes to a close, we here at BPS Tech wanted to leave you some great tips for you (and your data) to stay safe and secure when navigating the internet. If you are interested in learning more about cybersecurity and want to build really interesting/useful content for your students, join our “Think B4 You Click” professional development course (1 ALC). Click here if you are interested or sign up via Vector. Here are 5 things you should know about cybersecurity:
Thing # 1
Never leave your PII (personal identifiable information) in public and open spaces on the internet. Examples of this are: your work or physical address, phone numbers, usernames/ passwords, secret question answers for accounts, pictures, and any information that can be used to identify you. Take a look at his video to see how scammers try to get your PII from simple social media activities.
Thing # 2:
Don’t fall for misinformation or disinformation. If an article or a web resource sounds strange, off, or inaccurate, verify it on politifact.org/factcheck.org or through another legitimate fact-checking website/organization.
Thing # 3
Don’t fall for phishing scams! These are fake emails that try to get you to divulge personal/sensitive information or download malicious software onto your device/network. If something looks off: hover over the email address to make sure that email address matches the sender and, when in doubt, call the sender or email the sender directly at another legitimate address you have used before to verify the email is not phishing. If it is a phishing email, do not respond or interact with the sender in any way; delete it asap.
Thing # 4
Be careful when using public WiFi at coffee shops, hotels, and private organizations that offer free public WiFi. Oftentimes, cybercriminals will set up a WiFi network with the same name in order to gain access to your computer. When in doubt, use your cellphone hotspot.
Getting strange texts from unknown people you don’t know asking about things on your social media or just random questions? This is a type of phishing scam called “Smishing” (SMS + Phishing). Cybercriminals usually try to get you to divulge personal and/or sensitive information in order to sell it on the internet or use it in malicious ways. If this happens to you, block the number on your phone and report it as “phishing” or “smishing.” Do not interact with the sender in any way.