Three Key Steps to Secure PC Software

The most important thing to protect your devices, computers and data from hackers is secure PC software. Hackers (also known as cybercriminals) attack your device or computer for many reasons, including taking, altering, and deleting data you consider valuable. Hackers have malicious motives, unlike other thieves who may make use of stolen items to fulfill legitimate needs. They are more concerned with unauthorized access to your personal information, usually before you know there’s been a problem.

The three essential steps to secure your computer software are passwords, a firewall and virus protection. If you follow these top practices, it’s less likely that your computer will be compromised by hackers or malware (software that locks data and demands payment for its unlocking).

Change the name of your administrator account. Be sure to choose an effective password that has upper- and lowercase numerals, letters and computer symbols. Do not use a short password such as 1234 because hackers are able to use automated tools to break easy-to-guess passwords in minutes.

Make sure that your operating system (OS) and other software up-to-date. The majority of software updates include security fixes to help protect against hacking. Install all patches and turn on automatic updates if they are available to minimize the amount of this post time that you are vulnerable to hackers.

If you own a laptop, or any other portable device that’s not being used, make sure the drive is secured. This is particularly crucial for UF Students. Windows allows users to enable encryption by clicking Settings > Update & Security > Device encryption. This will protect the entire internal drive, as well as most external drives like SD cards.

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