Today, 30 November, is Computer Security Day. The day, started in 1988, was initiated to raise awareness about computer security issues and to remind people to protect their computers and digital information.
I have to admit that I am no expert on this, but I do know that the subject is more or less as big as you care to make it – from ensuring that you have basic virus or mallware protection in place, all the way to going to great lengths to ensure that your ‘digital footprint’ is as small as possible, out of fear of online personality theft or some similarly sinister conspiracy theory. I definitely lean somewhat towards the relaxed side of the scale – I guess simply maintaining a blog and having a Facebook presence is already enough to have the extreme paranoids running screaming to the hills.
Whatever your level of computer security awareness, there are some basic things we should all do – doing fairly regular backups, keeping your computer environment physically safe (locked up when you’re not around), clean and free of excess dust, pet hair etc, using unique, and non-obvious, passwords for your different online accounts, and not opening suspect emails or visiting dubious websites. (Sorry, but you didn’t win that million dollar lottery that you cannot remember entering, and that pastor trying to share his fortunes with you is not real either.)
Of course these days computer security no longer only applies to your home computer and/or laptop, but digital tablets and smart phones as well. In this age of being always connected and always online, I guess we should spend more time thinking about the topic than we typically do.
And perhaps Computer Security Day is just the day to get get us off our behinds and kick us into action.