October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM), which is an annual campaign to raise awareness about cybersecurity. IBM Security joined forces with the EveryApp team to share one tip a day to make people’s online lives safer. Here are their lessons from the first seven days of the month.

1. Keep Software Up to Date

Getting prompted for Java updates or iTunes? Cybercriminals love it when you don’t install updates when prompted, and they take full advantage of it.

2. Use Good Password Hygiene

Always use complicated passwords you can’t reuse or write down. But how can you possibly remember them, you may ask? Take Dawn’s advice and use a password manager.

3. Don’t Share Your SSN

Do medical providers, colleges and other places ask for your Social Security number? Only a handful of organizations actually have a valid reason to request your SSN.

4. Avoid Public Wi-Fi

Have you ever checked your Facebook or online banking account while on public Wi-Fi? That’s a no-no! Today’s lesson: Use data connection over public Wi-Fi.

5. On Vacation? Don’t Rub It In

Like to check-in at interesting places and share your travel plans or photos online? Burglars like it when you do, too! According to Safewise, thieves can break into your home in less than 60 seconds and spend less than 10 minutes stealing your possessions.

6. Beware of Untrusted Media

Found a CD or USB drive? Got one for free at a conference or networking event? Avoid inserting this untrusted media into your computer!

7. Shred Your Boarding Pass

It’s so exciting to travel, but beware: Barcodes can hold a lot of information.

Join the NCSAM Celebration

Don’t want to wait another week for new tips? To celebrate NCSAM, we are sharing tips daily on IBM Security’s LinkedIn and Twitter. Join us there!

Illustrations by Nathan Salla

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