There are frequent stories in the news about websites and online accounts getting hacked, and it is reasonable to be concerned that you might be vulnerable. But how can you protect yourself and your business?
I am not a security expert by any means, but I do have many sites and accounts that are important to me, so I have taken steps to protect them as best as I can.
There are two things I do to make it more difficult for somebody to compromise my accounts, and for me to be able to get my sites back up.
The way that many devious people can make a mess of your online life is to enter through a social network or email account, so I safeguard these with something called two-step verification (also known as two-factor authentication).
Basically, when I go to login to Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, and other sites, I need more than my user name and password.
I also need a unique code that is texted to me when I try to login. So, if somebody tries to force their way into one of my accounts, they won’t be able to get in, unless they also have my cell phone.
This feature is available through a wide array of online accounts. I currently use it at Dropbox, Facebook, GoDaddy, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft, PayPal, and Yahoo.
Two-step verification can be a bit of a hassle if your phone isn’t handy, but it beats having key accounts compromised.
One of the sites I mentioned that has two-step verification activated is Dropbox. If you’re not familiar with Dropbox, it’s a service that enables you to share files and folders with people in the cloud.
This way, you can have redundant versions on multiple computers, as well as collaborating on projects in the same file, rather than sending it back and forth.
I do this plenty, but I also have site backups automatically saved to Dropbox regularly. So, in the event a site of mine was destroyed, I have backups I can access quickly to restore.