It is estimated (2021) that there are between 4.3 billion to 5.1 billion active users on the internet. Most of these users are just like you and me, using the internet for everyday tasks and entertainment. But a small percentage of these people have malicious intent and want to hurt anyone they can, financially and/or mentally.
You can sophisticated tools to be able to detect and prevent access when someone is trying to get into your network. Tools like these are typically only found in enterprise networks, as they can be complex and expensive.
For home users, the better way to address this is through layered security. By having protection in place at multiple levels, these protections working together will significantly reduce the likelihood of unauthorized access.
Below are the three main areas you should be checking to improve security.
- Update your router firmware to the latest version
- Use a complex password for your “admin” login to your router
- Use a complex password for your WiFi
- If your router supports a Guest network, enable it
- Isolate IOT devices (thermostat, smart speakers, TVs, refrigerators) to a separate network
- Keep your device’s Operating System up-to-date. (Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, etc.)
- Remove or uninstall Apps that you don’t need. Update your Apps to their latest versions
- If using antivirus/anti-malware, keep it up-to-date
- Only browse sites that you trust
- Never open links or attachments in email
- Organize your data so that backups can be simplified
- Backup your data using the 3-2-1 backup rule
- Test backup recovery at least once a year
- Create Canary tokens to know when you’ve been breached
Another thing to consider is the age of your devices. If your router/PC/Phone is older than 5 years, then you may want to start looking into a newer device. As our devices age, not only do they lack newer security technologies, they also lack support for updates.
Big tech companies like Apple, Google, Microsoft provide support up to 5 years. With smaller companies, you’ll be lucky to find 3 years of support.