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Technology and Innovation

Phone: 913-715-1500

111 S Cherry, Suite 3100, Olathe KS 66061

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Secure It

Secure your digital profile

Cybercriminals are very good at getting personal information from unsuspecting victims and the methods are getting more sophisticated as technology evolves. Protect against cyber threats by learning about security features available on the equipment and software you use.

Apply additional layers of security to your devices – like Multi-Factor Authentication_ to better protect your personal information.

Cybersecurity - Secure It

Strong Password

Don’t pass on strong passwords

Passwords! What a headache, especially when people worry about password safety. Sometimes it seems like that in order to be safe, your password must contain letters, numbers, punctuation, and special characters.

But the truth is that it’s easier to create a long, strong, safe password than most people think. Let’s take a quick look at a few tips for making a password that will keep your account safe.

  1. Try using a passphrase instead of a password.
    • Passphrases or sentences will always be longer than a single word (which is good, because government advice now suggests that passwords be anywhere from eight to 64 letters long!) and they stick in your mind better, because they have more meaning.
  2. Make sure it’s something you can remember without writing down.
    • If you do have to write down your password, make sure to protect that paper carefully — like locking it in a desk drawer or safe or use a password keeper app.

Check out our infographic on shaking up your passphrase protocol and pick up a few good tips on creating and protecting strong passwords.

strong passwords

MFA

Double your login protection.

Double your login protection. Multi-factor authentication is a tech industry term for using different types of verification to get into an account. A password is one example of a factor; a fingerprint is another. Enable multi-factor authentication (MFA) to ensure that the only person who has access to your account is you. Use it for email, banking, social media, and any other service that requires logging in. If MFA is an option, enable it by using a trusted mobile device, such as your smartphone, an authenticator app, or a secure token—a small physical device that can hook onto your key ring.

Multi-factor authentication makes it much harder for hackers to break into people’s accounts. If they have one password but not the other one or two factors that they need, then they can’t get into that account after all.

Let’s look at a couple of tips for authentication.

  1. Check whether you can set it up on any of your accounts. Most accounts that you’d want to protect offer it. In a setup like this, the account will ask for something in addition to a password — usually, sending a text message to your phone.
  2. Use different types of authentication. There are different types of factors: something you know, something you have and something you are. Use factors from different families for extra protection.
  3. Use authenticator apps to easily handle two-factor authentication for multiple accounts.

Phishing

Phishing attacks use email or malicious websites to infect your machine with malware and viruses in order to collect personal and financial information. Cybercriminals attempt to lure users to click on a link or open an attachment that infects their computer with viruses or malware, creating vulnerability to attacks. Phishing emails may appear to come from a real financial institution, e-commerce site, government agency, or any other service, business, or individual. The email may also request personal information like account numbers, passwords, or Social Security numbers. When users respond with the information or click on a link, attackers use it to access their accounts.

How to Avoid the “Hook”

Check it Out

  1. Look up the website or phone number for the company or person who’s contacting you
  2. Call the number or person directly. Use a number you know to be correct, not the number I the email or text
  3. Tell them the message you received

Look for Scam Tip -Offs

  • You don’t have an account with the company or your do not know the person.
  • The message is missing you name or uses bad grammar and spelling.
  • The person asks for personal information, including passwords.

How to Report Phishing

If you got a phishing email or text message, please report it:

  1. Forward phishing email to the FTC at spam@uce.gov and to the Anti-Phishing Working Group at reportphishing@apwg.org.
  2. If you received a phishing text message, forward it to SPAM (7726).
  3. Report the phishing attack to the FTC at ftc.gov/complaint.

To report suspicious IRS related emails or phone calls, please visit https://www.irs.gov/privacy-disclosure/report-phishing

The information you give can help fight the scammers.

 

Shopping Online

Staying safe when shopping online

More people are shopping online than ever before! It’s convenient to be able to order anything you like, and have it delivered to your door. Unfortunately, that also means there’s more risk. Scammers and criminals may try to steal people’s information and money when they shop online.

The good news is that there are several simple ways you can act to protect yourself and shop safe online. Let’s take a quick look at some tips.

  1. Never do your shopping on public Wi-Fi networks. Public Wi-Fi can have weak security and sending sensitive information like an address and credit card number over a public connection could expose that information to other people.
  2. Check out the reviews for the site and retailer before you commit to buying anything. You can easily check for scam reports by searching online at the Better Business Bureau.
  3. Use bookmarks rather than links to reach sites. Links can be spoofed, but when you keep a bookmark to your favorite shopping site, you won’t be redirected by a scammer. With some common sense and care, you can shop safe online and get more bang for your buck.