Online & Network Security Must Haves – Part 1

The word “hacker” is often associated with the terms crime and fraud. However, hackers can be a good defense against online fraud, such as the “white hat” hackers that work to prevent fraud and fight identity theft. Unfortunately, white hat hackers aren’t as common as criminal hackers.

It is important to first understand what different types of identity theft occur, and then you can find out how to get protection.

The easiest item for a criminal or hacker to obtain is your password. Some common mistakes made when setting up passwords is using names of kids, birthdates, or hometowns. Spelling your child’s name backwards is another frequent mistake. I have even seen people write their passwords on a sticky note, in a notebook or in your PDA. Do not give office assistants your passwords. Remember passwords are used in more than 90 percent of all online network security practices. People use passwords for online banking, shopping, stock trading, and network logons. It is imperative to create a strong password.

A password alone may not secure your online purchases. Many are turning to smart card security and Power LogOn. Power LogOn combined with Smart Card technology provides the ability to securely store your passwords in a smart card chip, like an electronic safe. This can help prevent a criminal from getting your passwords and personal information. A smart card is a plastic card with an embedded chip that can offer advanced security features to prevent unauthorized access to retrieve and modify stored data.

Power LogOn provides many security benefits such as:

  • Passwords can be created by using 20 out of 96 available keyboard characters.
  • PIN protected smartcard technology locks the data after three wrong authorization attempts.
  • The software works with your PC or network logon, password protected data files, windows-based applications and web accounts.

Password security, without convenient implementation, is not free to the company or website that lacks it. Resetting passwords can take 20 to 50 percent of IT support’s time and costs approximately $70 per incident. This is time and money that could be more wisely used to increase other aspects of a company’s network security. Part 2

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