Security Essentials: Learning Better Email Security Practices

Step One:

Before we begin, you can have the most advanced cyber security practices and anti-virus in place, but if you do not have a strong enough password to secure your devices or online accounts, all your security measures might as well be useless. It is a statistical fact that more people are hacked as a result of weak passwords than any other single factor. With that said, learning how to write and remember strong and sophisticated passwords is not nearly as hard as you might think.

Learn More – How To Write & Remember Strong Passwords:

With that out of the way, outside of weak passwords, the 2nd most common way to hack someone is through email – just ask Hillary Clinton, John Podesta and John Brennan about that. This is also why learning how to practice better email security habits should be much important to you after reading this article.

Email Security Strategies:

While browsing through your email accounts, never open a single email (message) or click on any link(s) from a sender you do not know personally. It might seem harmless, but the simple act of curiously opening an email or clicking on a link within an email can open Malware or register and transmit the IP Address of the device you are using to the sender of that email or link.

When a hacker sends compromising emails or links to your personal inbox, it is a technique known as “Phishing” and it is perhaps the most common form of cyber attack you will ever encounter. I am willing to bet that everyone whom has ever owned an email account has seen a phishing scheme at one point or another in their lifetime, whether they were even aware of it or not. This is also why it is important to not just leave your email out in the open for all the world to see, or blindly pass it around to so many pages across the internet – especially if you have something to lose.

Believe it or not, there are even free and public services that allow any person to secretly attach a program to any given link or email they send, which automatically transmits data such as your IP Address as soon as you open it. This type of program also reveals things like the time of day you clicked the link and how long you kept the window open. This is also what is refereed to as a “trap-link.” The most common of which comes in the formof an “IP-logger,” which automatically registers the data of any device that clicks on it. While this might sound extremely complicated or foreign to you, again, regardless of the legality of it all, there are actually multiple free services, platforms and tools available on the internet for people to do just this. 

Needless to say, always use caution and judgement when clicking on any links in your inbox, online chat, message or social media network alike – especially from people/sources/senders you do not know or have never done business with directly.

A good practice is to also use separate accounts for different purposes. For example, use a separate email account for your online banking and/or business than you would use for family, friends, or subscribing to magazines. This ensures that if one account is ever breached or compromised, not every aspect of your life gets compromised along with it. Additionally, use separate passwords for separate accounts and always reserve your strongest passwords for your most important accounts. You should also utilize two-factor authentication whenever and wherever possible.

Security Based Email Service Providers:

If you are particularly concerned about cyber security, you should never use Gmail, Yahoo or AOL/Hotmail accounts. Whether it hurts your feelings to know or not, every single one of these services has been fully corrupted in the past and remain some of the easiest email platforms for hackers and/or Government officials alike to access. This is why many people have decided to make the switch to encrypted email security providers.

If you are unfamiliar with encrypted email service providers, I do not blame you – most people are not. Much like the password security guide above, I have also pre-assembled a small list of the worlds best encrypted email service providers.

Learn More:

Categories: Cyber Security

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