The Missing Links in Your Improved Security
Online security is a very important part of today’s life. We do (almost) everything online, and everything requires a password. And those passwords are often insecure and potentially exposing you to an epic disaster. We’ve covered securing your website and the reasons why you need two factor and a password manager but it turns out that you could be following all the rules of “security” and still find yourself in trouble.
Here at Venture Creations, we focus on digital marketing. For your brand, that could be social media advertising or an AdWords campaign. But it could also be a website or even a complete online presence. And if the security of your personal digital life AND your brand rests solely on access to your cell phone, it’s time to improve.
What can you do to improve your security?
First things first, add a pin to your cellular account. It’s very easy – call them and tell them you want a pin or password on your account. Don’t use part of your phone number or your birthday, but absolutely put a pin on your account. I’ve had a pin on my cell phone account since I had a cell phone account. It can get a little annoying when my younger brothers decide to buy new phones and text me in a panic because someone is asking for the pin and they can’t finish purchasing their phone without it, but I’ll gladly take that inconvenience over what happened to John Biggs at TechCrunch.
Secondly, replace SMS two-factor with an app whenever possible. Google Authenticator is a great option, and what I use, and I also can highly recommend Authy. It’s an extra step from just receiving a text message, but if someone steals my phone number, they won’t have access to my Google Authenticator account.
And finally, save those backup codes! When you’re enabling two-factor, most of the time you’ll be given the option to print or download backup codes specifically for scenarios where you do not have access to whatever else you might need, like your cell phone. I print mine out and lock them in my fireproof safe along with other vital records. If my house burns down along with my cell phone, my focus isn’t going to be on getting back into my Facebook account, but you can be sure I’ll need access to my Gmail account ASAP.
The chances are good that you are not a target for cyber crime, and someone isn’t lurking out there waiting to spoof your SIM card and steal your entire online presence, but why leave it up to chance? It doesn’t take long to set up proper security, and if you ever need it, you’ll be thrilled you took the time to put everything in place. Sometimes I’m just glad my cellular account pin exists to keep my brothers from changing our data plan!
Sarah recently relocated to Grand Rapids from metro Detroit, by way of Southern Indiana. She stumbled into a career in marketing accidentally with a focus on the outdoor industry and hunting. She has never been hunting, and her worst memories as a kid are of attempted camping trips. Her hobbies and interests include binge-watching sitcoms, teaching herself WordPress and Adobe Creative Suite, and playing Dungeons and Dragons. She is obsessed with understanding BitCoin, even though she knows she never will.