3 Simple Steps to Reducing Your Potential Exposure to Malware

How many computer issues begin by ignoring basic maintenance and security steps?
More than you may think!

Like a simple exercise program, some of the pointers we offer clients appear to be pretty basic. And well-beyond the catastrophes we have encountered and solved at Roan Solutions. Often we encounter responses like, “shouldn’t there be a more complicated or involved solution? That’s it, some basics?” When we skip exercise, we can become flabby and open for illness and injury. So too can our computer systems (and our business) become “unfit” without performing some of the most basic routines and checks.
Don't Let Malware Creep In
So, what are some of these basic steps we ought to incorporate into our daily and weekly routines?

Check Your Software
How many users in your organization are using different platforms? How many are using different versions of the same software? How many on your team even KNOW the difference? If employees utilize different plug-ins, different software, different versions, different plug-ins, your systems can be vulnerable. Even simple tools like a PDF reader can cause heartache and stress down the road if left unchecked.

It’s not just a “good” idea to check for updates. It’s a GREAT idea to check for updates. Such a simple step, but very few ever do it. Most operating systems, along with many reliable software tools, ActiveX controls, add-ons and plug-ins will issue updates and keep a changelog. It’s a good idea to check and see if there has been an update. Also, a tip for plug-ins and apps: if there are just a few downloads, or only a few reviews, let someone else take the risk of trying something out. Don’t even get started in the first place with an app or plug-in unless it has been installed many many MANY times.

How About That Password?
Weak passwords are, well… weak! They can make your entire system (and thus, your business) vulnerable. It is stunning in 2012 how many passwords are still variations on the word “password” or number sequences like “1234.” Avoid using common words found in the dictionary, or birthdays, family names (you may inadvertently be giving away more than you realize!). Try to stick with longer passwords, random strings of numbers, symbols along with uppercase and lowercase letters. And change the password on a regular basis! Many times, when we hear an account has been compromised or hacked, the fault may lie with the fact a password was given out. Be very careful of who has access to your passwords!

While this clearly not an exhaustive list, it IS a good start. Be sure to call Roan Solutions at 877-774-4647 if you would like more information on securing your business data.

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Posted in IT Consulting in Boston, Newsletter Articles
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