Most common security mistakes people do

To be fair, some of these issues are getting quite ancient while some of them are new. The common ground is that they never seem to go away, as there is always some people that keep on doing them. Here is my list of security “horrors” that you or anyone you know should take care of.

1. Did you upgrade your router?

Upgrading the firmware is crucial these days. Router is not just a buy and forget anymore, like it used to be somewhere around the year 2000. Please upgrade your router firmware regularly.  Check if there are upgrades available. If no upgrades are available from the manufacturer then maybe consider either OpenWRT(if supported) or something along the lines of Advanced Tomato to keep your router up-to-date and secured. One easy solution is also to shop for a new and more secure router.If somebody would gain access to your router from the outside then the whole network would be all open for scrutiny – and that would be bad.

2. Download only known programs

Malicious applications are a menace that can take your smartphone down and do pretty much anything with your phone and its data. Always double-check what you are downloading.

3. Do not connect to free Wi-Fi or open hotspots without a VPN.

It takes about 3 minutes for a malicious person with the right tools to clone your device’s MAC address and virtually make it appear as if he/she is actually using your device to access the Internet. The previous is of course a serious issue and can lead to serious problems. Always use VPN to secure your device when connecting to  any unknown networks. The best way is to setup a VPN by yourself. Alternatively,  get the service from a trusted provider.

4. Photos.

Instagram and others are fun. Everybody loves followers but still people tend to overshare. It is not uncommon that people who post to Instagram and other medias forget to disable location data from their images. Location data is then there for everyone to extract. So, please do check your photo’s settings before you post.

5. Passwords.

12345 is still among the most common ones. It is not a password at all. Neither is your cat’s or dog’s name. An actual password should be, at least, 10 marks long and it should contain letters, numbers and random marks. Do not use words. The best way is to use random markings that do not make any sense. People generally underestimate the power of password cracking attacks. Underestimating is a problem in the modern environment where we have more and more malicious computer power ready for all kinds of dictionary and brute-force attacks.

“Why would somebody be interested in me?”

Many people claim that they are secured because they are average and nobody cares about the average citizen. These days it actually does not matter who you are. Security issues concern all who are living the age of IT.