Protecting your cyber security: Tips from the experts

April 12, 2024
Area(s) of Interest: Cyber Security 

The health care sector faces significant cybersecurity risks, exemplified by incidents like the Change Healthcare cyberattack, which underscore the importance of protecting your business – and your patients – from cybercriminals. Health care facilities are often prime targets due to their size, reliance on technology and possession of sensitive data.

It is crucial for professionals, especially those handling sensitive data, to prioritize cybersecurity. Data security expert, Jason A. Bernstein, a partner at the law firm Barnes & Thornburg, has provided valuable tips to help improve cyber habits and reduce the risk of cyberattacks.

  1. Freeze Your Credit
    Credit freezing is a highly effective tool against identity theft. It prevents thieves from applying for credit under your name using stolen information. Unlike credit monitoring, which only alerts you to potential misuse, freezing your credit stops new accounts from being opened. Thawing your credit files is easy when needed.
  2. Verify Email Addresses Before Clicking Links
    Spoofing and phishing attacks often rely on disguised email addresses. Hover over email addresses or links to check their legitimacy. Even emails from friends could be compromised, so be cautious with all links and attachments.
  3. Use Passphrases, Not Passwords
    Create passphrases that include upper- and lower-case letters, symbols, and numbers. Change your passphrase occasionally and use different passphrases for different accounts to enhance security.
  4. Consider a Password Manager
    Password managers can help organize and protect your passphrases, making them a valuable tool in maintaining your online security.
  5. Enable Two-Factor Authentication
    Use two-factor authentication for online storage and financial accounts. This adds an extra layer of security by requiring both a password and a one-time passcode.
  6. Log Out of Online Accounts
    Always log out of online accounts when you're finished using them, rather than just closing the browser tab.
  7. Backup Your Data Regularly and Offline
    Backup your data routinely and store it offline to protect against ransomware attacks. Make sure to disconnect backup drives from the internet and your network when not in use.
  8. Update and Patch Software Regularly
    Install operating system and firmware updates promptly to protect against new threats.
  9. Use Secure Websites for Credit Card Transactions
    Ensure websites start with "https://" before submitting credit card information online.
  10. Educate Your Family, Friends, and Colleagues
    Share these tips with colleagues, friends, family, and elderly relatives who may be less familiar with cybersecurity best practices.

Cyber threats are constantly evolving, so staying vigilant and proactive is key to safeguarding sensitive data. Stay safe online!


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