5 Simple ways to help keep your Data Safe, that do not cost anything

5 Simple ways to help keep your data safe, that do not cost anything.

This may be a very controversial way to start, what I am hoping will be a very helpful article. The most dangerous threat to your data? The one thing that could cause the biggest problems to a device or computer system is the user. Umm, that's you and me.

It is surprisingly easy to overcome this and to keep your computer safe without costing you or your company any money at all. What I will do within this article is just go through five of the simplest ways of doing this.

1. PASSWORDS     Over 23 million breached accounts used “123456” as a password ESET Welivesecurity

  •    Use a unique password and a complex one

         Single word passwords of 8 characters or less can be cracked by cracking

         systems in a matter of hours, even with numbers and characters changed. The

         longer the password the better but if you use a passphrase then it can take

         them years.

  •   One is six people use pet’s name as a password. ESET Welivesecurity

  •   Use a phrase that means something to you but no one else will guess.

  •   Do not share your password with anyone else

  •   Do not write it down

2.      LOCK YOUR PC.

Opportunity is everything.

  •   If you PC is unlocked, you are allowing anyone to access data that they don’t have        permission to access.

  •   Malware could be introduced with a usb drive

  •   Set a time out, set you computer to lock if let unattended for of 10 minutes.

  •   Better still Lock it as you walk away

  • When you get back you unlock it the same way as you first log in, just faster 

3.      Who is watching you?

  • Be aware of your environment

  • If you are working in a public place, try and have a wall behind you

  • Use Biometrics (Fingerprint button) on your phone and if possible, on your laptop if you work outside of a secure environment.

4.      Do not let anyone you don’t totally trust connect to your PC.

Most of us will have whinged about our PC or laptop at some point, so be aware that when you get the annoying spam calls, “We have detected there is a problem with your PC”, “We have noticed a problem with your broadband”


Unless the person reporting the above is being specifically paid by you to know this information, they are guessing. It is the numbers game as always. Allowing this breach could cost you a lot of time and money.

5.      Multi Factor Authentication.

Microsoft: 99.9 percent of hacked accounts didn’t use MFA. ESET Welivesecurity

  •   Even with a strong password it is still possible to crack an account.

  •   MFA or 2FA is What you know and What you have, you know your

         password and you have a mobile phone, so when you log into you

         service a code is sent to your mobile to verify it is you All banks use

         some form of Multi Factor Authentication, so it has to be important……


Microsoft Authenticator app


Google Authenticator

Even a Text message is better than nothing.

Microsoft 365, Google apps, Amazon, eBay so many other platforms used it so why not use it on your PC or Laptop.     

6.      Encryption (OK this is not free but…….).

Two laptops left on the tube every day, reveals Transport for London 2018


Hardware, PC’s Laptops, USB Keys, External Hard drives, CD/DVDs are always vulnerable to being stolen, or lost. The loss of the device is only the start

The loss must be reported to the ICO, which can then result in a nasty fine, according to the ICO website “2% - 4% of the total annual worldwide turnover in the preceding financial year.”

  • Prevention is much better than a cure.

Encrypt with managed encryption and you can prove the device is protected even if it has been lost.

If you have any questions about any of the issues above then get in touch, a free audit can be done for you to see just how secure you are.