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Secure Jeffco News

Posted on: September 18, 2020

Protecting Sensitive Information

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In this article, we share our Top 5 recommendations to help you protect your sensitive information.
Please note #4 - The Sheriff's Office is hosting a Shred-A-Thon on October 3, 2020.

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month.  Cybersecurity Awareness Month was launched by the National Cyber Security Alliance & the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in October 2004.  It was created as a collaborative effort between government and industry to ensure every American has the resources they need to stay safer and more secure online.  This year, during Cybersecurity Awareness Month, the Jefferson County Cyber Security team is sharing several articles to help you better protect your online information as well as sharing ideas about how to have fun with passwords.  

In this article, we share recommendations to help you protect your sensitive information.

In general terms, sensitive information is any information that could be used to conduct identity theft, blackmail, stalking, or other crimes against an individual and this is information we should protect both at home and at work.

While it might feel daunting, there is actually quite a bit you can do to protect your sensitive information.  This article has 101 tips for protecting your sensitive information:  

Here are our 5 top recommendations:

  1. Take stock. Know what personal information you have in your files and on your computers.
  2. Scale down. Keep only what you need, share only what is required.
    1. When asked to provide sensitive information inquire if that information is required, and if it is, ask how they are protecting your information.  Provide only the information required.
    2. When offering information, like on social media, consider how that information could be used by an unauthorized party. 
  3. Lock it. Protect the information that you choose to keep.
    1. Keep your software up-to-date.
      1. Here is how you keep your Mac up-to-date.
      2. Here is how you keep Windows up-to-date.
    2. Encrypt your data.  This will ensure if your computer is lost or stolen your data on that device is protected.
      1. Here is how you encrypt a Mac.
      2. Here is how you encrypt Windows 10.
  4. Pitch it. Properly dispose of what you no longer need.
    1. Shred paper documents.  The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office hosts an annual Shred-a-thon.
  5. Plan ahead. Create a plan to respond to security incidents. 
    1. Ensure you are backing up data you can’t afford to lose permanently.
    2. Know where to look for help if your data is breached.  Some guidance is provided on Secure Jeffco.

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