With the threat of cybercrime not likely to disappear any time soon, the need to have secure passwords has never been greater. In the years to come, it is likely that this will continue to be the case. So, if you are looking to prevent cybercriminals from gaining access to your online accounts, you’ll need to take the necessary precautions.
Thankfully, it is now easier than ever to manage your passwords – all thanks to the wide availability of password managers including Nordpass. By using a tool such as Nordpass, you’ll be able to take on board the insights provided by cybersecurity experts who continually express the need to have secure and unique passwords for each and every one of your accounts. Continue reading as we take a closer look at excellent password management in our complete guide.
Make use of a password manager
A common complaint among internet users is that they have such a large number of passwords to remember. Thankfully, this needn’t be an issue anymore as password managers have made this process incredibly simple. All that you need to do is remember one master password, and the password manager will do the rest.
You may be tempted to use a built-in password management tool such as one that is available via web browsers including Google Chrome or Firefox. But in the current day and age, you can never be too careful. So, it’s worth making use of a dedicated password manager, with one that uses solid encryption to protect your passwords undoubtedly being the best choice.
With plenty of password managers out there on the market, you’re certainly spoilt for choice in the current day and age. There are options that won’t cost you a penny to install and use, whereas others work using a subscription-based model. So, regardless of your requirements, there sure to be a suitable option for you.
Ensure that each one of your passwords is strong and unique
One thing that millions of people across the globe are guilty of is using the same passwords across their online accounts. In a world where cybercrime is rife, this is something that you should absolutely avoid. After all, if a hacker is able to guess a password to one of your accounts, this will mean that other online accounts using the same password will also become vulnerable.
What’s more, the 2019 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) even discovered that more than 80% of data breaches were a direct result of using poor passwords. For that reason, it is highly recommended that you do not use easily guessable passwords such as your date of birth, or simple numerical sequences such as ‘123456’.
To give you more of an idea on how to generate a secure password, it is best to use a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters. If you do decide to use special characters, it’s worth spreading them out as much as possible as opposed to placing them at the beginning and/or end. The sweet spot in terms of characters is a range of between 12-15 as this makes guessing your password far more difficult for hackers.
Using a password manager will enable you to easily set strong and unique passwords for each of your accounts, many of which can be generated using the password manager itself. Once you’ve done this, it will no longer be an easy process to crack your password. Plus, making them unique ensures that hackers won’t be able to gain easy access to your other online accounts in any instance where a certain website or service you use becomes subject to a data breach.
Use two-factor authentication
Many websites and services now offer the ability to add an additional layer of protection during the logging in process. This is called two-factor authentication – a process which sends a unique code usually by SMS or email which you will need to enter online before you can login to an account of yours.
This is a great way to prevent any unauthorised access to your accounts, as you will be alerted immediately as to when an unrecognised device attempts to make a login. So, if this particular feature is offered on a website or service that you use, it’s well worth making use of it.
So, that concludes our complete guide to excellent password managing! By this point, it should be clear to you that effectively managing your passwords is the key to preventing any unauthorised access to your online accounts.
Therefore, if you haven’t already done so, you should definitely take the time out to give your online accounts a password overhaul and ensure that they are all unique and as strong as possible. When combined with a solid password manager and two-factor authentication, you will be in a far better position to keep any opportunist thieves at bay.
Safeguarding Your Mailbox from Spam, Hack & Phishing
An email goes a long way before getting to the addressee. After all, malicious software may be introduced in this chain or the server owner intentionally takes certain actions to obtain confidential information and damage the mail server by sending spam. In addition, the recipient may be an attacker and use the information received for a personal gain.
However, that’s not all. An additional problem is associated with the massive use of personal mobile devices to access corporate mail services. In the case of a device hack, the company’s reputation is damaged and important information is lost or stolen. Luckily, all problems can be solved comprehensively. There are email protection systems and the spam email checker Cleantalk email checker that can help you do that.
Email Security Methods
Comprehensive protection of information is aimed at the following tasks:
- Ensuring the unhindered receipt of letters by the addressee, without the possibility of their interception, opening, reading, as well as the prevention of possible forgery;
- Protection of information sent via e-mail from its distribution by an attacker without the knowledge of the sender;
- Blocking and the automatic deletion of spam email entries and attempts to hack a mail server.
To achieve all the above goals, traditional cryptography methods are used, while protection against possible forgery involves the use of the electronic digital signature. The technical side of the security issue most often involves the installation of a special, independently compiled software module (plug-in) for the mail client. This is usually enough because this small-sized additional software automatically encrypts letters and signs them. Possible vulnerabilities in such a set of security measures appear only in the following cases:
- The installation of clearly weak cryptographic algorithms;
- Malfunctioning cryptographic algorithms or protocols involved;
- Bookmarks originally made by the attacker into cryptographic algorithms that make it possible to crack email;
- Actions of a virus capable of intercepting an already decrypted message on the device of the addressee or gaining access to the keys of the sender’s machine.
With an integrated approach to protecting mail or when using professional solutions, these vulnerabilities are identified and eliminated.
Antispam Action Algorithm
After checking the received message, the solution determines its status: spam, possible spam, or not spam. When analyzing email contents, the following assessment criteria are applied:
- The blacklist of senders, as well as the list of spam phrases – If the sender is not present in the blacklist and contains no content considered as spam, the email is marked as not spam. If a sender is listed in the blacklist or there are “no-go” phrases in the email, the letter is blocked and doesn’t land in your mailbox.
- Headers – The header text is analyzed using the special algorithm, embedded images and links are checked as well.
- Email structure – By analyzing the email structure, its status can be determined as well.
Some services also check the IP address of a sender. In case the same IP is involved in many “email-sending” operations within a short period of time, it is considered a spam bot and all its activities are blocked on your end.
UN and Sony PlayStation team up with new virtual experience to raise gamers’ awareness of climate change
The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and Sony PlayStation have teamed up to create an immersive virtual reality experience designed to increase global awareness about what a climate change-friendly lifestyle looks like.
For the first time, UNEP and Sony have collaborated using the DreamsTM platform to create an immersive video that seeks to bring viewers face to face with their individual carbon footprints. It takes the audience on a 5 minute journey through an average day, observing what they eat, how they travel and the homes they live in. The video ends with viewers witnessing a giant 34 meter high heaving ball illustrating the carbon footprint of an average person in a developed country.
“COVID has brought unprecedented disruption to how we live our lives, but now as we move out of lock-downs, we have an opportunity to develop new habits that can keep us within the safe limits of a 1.5 degree world. We hope that this ‘virtual reality check’ will show people how beautiful and possible these new lifestyle choices are” said Ligia Noronha, Director of UNEP’s Economy Division
As a member of the Playing for the Planet Alliance, launched in 2019 with the support of UNEP, Sony hopes to see more game designers becoming more deliberate about tackling climate change. The Alliance hosted a Green Mobile Green Jam with 11 companies in April that will see more companies integrate green activations into their games.
Explaining this project’s approach, lead illustrator Martin Nebelong said, “Virtual reality is an extraordinary storytelling medium for climate change – as an artist, I wanted to design a beautiful and sometimes frightening experience that shows the true scale of our emissions and the impacts we should expect to see. This is not possible in two dimensions.”
Speaking in support of the initiative, Kieren Mayers, Director of Environment and Technical Compliance at Sony PlayStation said, “Gaming reaches a huge audience worldwide, and has the power to inspire social change. Sony Group has a global environmental plan “Road to Zero”, and following, and following our commitment at the September 2019 UN Climate Summit in New York, we have partnered with UNEP to explore various ways to use gaming and virtual reality to educate and bring messages of hope – and are excited to see this video using DreamsTM as one of the first initiatives from this.”
Viewers will not need virtual reality devices to experience it – the video will also be streamed through Youtube in a 360 degree format so that viewers can interact with the experience on desktops or mobile devices. The video will also be shared via Earth School which has been visited by some 700,000 young people as a result of UNEP’s collaboration with TED-Ed for students and educators around the world.
COVID-19 Hastens Automation, New APEC Report Finds
The COVID-19 pandemic will accelerate the adoption of automation by firms and organizations across the region, according to a new policy brief by the APEC Policy Support Unit and The Asia Foundation, titled “COVID-19, 4IR and the Future of Work.”
Constraints to labor supply caused by movement restrictions, both domestically and globally, as well as the withdrawal of workers who are elderly or have pre-existing conditions are some of the push factors for firms to explore or even deploy automation in their operations.
A variety of stimulus and relief measures launched by governments to cushion the COVID-19 pandemic, such as lower interest rates and subsidies for going digital, may also provide incentives for more firms to automate business processes. The unintended impact of this scenario would be the risk of certain jobs being eliminated, which would contribute to creating further spikes in unemployment rates around the region.
The report calls on APEC policymakers to conduct a thorough risk assessment of jobs that may be impacted or eliminated by automation to understand the challenges faced by workers and the unforeseen impacts of crisis-response policies.
“It is impossible for us to talk about growth when people are struggling to secure their livelihoods,” Dr Rebecca Fatima Sta Maria, Executive Director of the APEC Secretariat commented. “We have been mandated by ministers to prioritize the return of workers to employment. Our responsibility is to ensure that we support people at risk with greater inclusive policy instruments.”
Policymakers are advised to strengthen and expand social protection policies to protect workers and provide income security. APEC will also need to collaborate closely with the private sector to monitor automation trends and support the need for workforce upskilling and retraining.
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