Architect, CISSP, CCNP, GCED

The world is changing rapidly, and we’re starting to see cracks in the security controls we’ve come to rely on in our digital society.  Even Equifax, one of the largest credit reporting organizations out there, has suffered a data breach.  I’m often asked by friends and family how I react to the news and what I recommend, so I thought I’d share my suggestions with you.

First of all, don’t panic.  You’re in the same boat as millions of other folks, but you still need to take action.  With data breaches, check with the company’s website to determine if identity theft services will be offered free of charge.  Equifax is offering free identity protection and credit file monitoring related to the recent incident.  You don’t get these protections automatically though—you need to sign up for these services.  Obtain copies of your own credit reports for free from annualcreditreport.gov as well, and review carefully.  I don’t suggest spending money on expensive credit monitoring services or credit score alerts.

In your personal accounts, consider using unique, strong passwords and a password manager, such as Dashlane, LastPass or 1Password, to keep them all straight.  Even if you don’t share your passwords with anyone, we have seen cases of passwords being compromised from one service (such as Yahoo or LinkedIn) and hackers attempting to use the same password to sign into other services.  Good password management, and keeping up with patch management on your personal devices, can really go a long way in protecting access to your online assets.

What I don’t suggest is to stop using online and digital-based services.  As the hackers evolve, so do the security controls.  And with every threat comes new protections to help keep us safe in the digital world.  ePlus is a leader in cyber security services and offers a wide breadth of products and services, creating security programs aimed at helping organizations improve their security posture. For more information, check out ePlus Security, email eplus-security@eplus.com, or contact your ePlus Account Executive.

Have fun and be watchful out there!

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