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Is Your Identity Exposed? Tips to Secure Your Identity Online

Did you know that 429 million identities were exposed in 2015? Findings from the 2016 Symantec Internet Security Threat Report show that this number actually hides a bigger story. While there was a record number of 9 mega breaches in this year, companies are not required to disclose the full extent of a data breach. The total number of people affected by a data breach and whose identity is compromised as a result could be much greater. A conservative estimate by Symantec accounting for unreported breaches pushes the number of records lost in a data breach to more than a half billion, in ...
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How Do Firewalls Prevent Computer Viruses?

You’ve likely heard the word ‘firewall’ used to describe a measure of prevention against cyber criminals. But that doesn’t mean you know how a firewall actually works, does it? Don’t worry—the truth is that most people don’t how a firewall works; they just expect it to do its job. But it’s actually a lot simpler than you might think. Once you learn a little more about firewalls, you might feel more confident about installing one on your home computer, if you haven’t already. If you’re already using a firewall to prevent cyber attacks, perhaps learning more about how it works will improve ...
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The Day I Thought Cybercriminals Left Me For Dead

Early on a Wednesday evening, I received a call from my doctor. Her voice, frantic on the line, proclaims, “I’m so happy to hear your voice- the strangest thing happened today. You were marked in our system as deceased for about 20 minutes.” I paused for a moment out of shock, and assured her I was very much alive and well. She went on to explain how she’d never seen anything like it before. As the initial shock wore off, we started to have a bit of a laugh on how bizarre this was. 

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How Can I Tell If I Have Malware and What Can I Do About It?

Malware has become a catchall term for various types of cyber security risks, such as viruses, Trojan horses, worms, adware, ransomware and spyware. Many of us use these terms interchangeably to describe strange symptoms or behaviors encountered on a computer. However, all of them share a common goal, which is to compromise the safety of your devices. Symptoms of malware may appear obvious or discrete; knowing how to detect these dangerous intrusions will help you determine how to go about fixing the problem should it ever occur.   Malware is short for malicious software and refers to pro...
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Watch "Zero Days," a Thrilling Look at the Cyber Warfare Stuxnet Virus That Took Down a Nuclear Power Plant

Introducing “Zero Days,” the real-life cyber warfare documentary featuring Symantec cyber-security experts Eric Chien and Liam O’Murchu. You may have heard about the Stuxnet virus in the media over the years. However, brief news reports don’t even begin to uncover the darkness of this threat. In “Zero Days,” director Alex Gibney takes a deeper look at the sophisticated piece of weapons-grade malware that destroyed a part of an Iranian nuclear facility, as well as help facilitate espionage by spying on its target. This thrilling documentary discusses the complexity of the virus with Sy...
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How to Stay Safe When File Sharing Online

File sharing technology is an easy way for individuals or institutions to transfer content on the internet. There are several peer-to-peer (P2P) applications and services available. Some applications are free and others offer paid subscriptions for larger storage capacity, speedier service or extra security. File sharing is a very common activity for most online users, but file sharing also makes you susceptible to various online threats including identity theft, infection or attack. If you plan on using file sharing technology be sure personal data and other sensitive materials are secur...
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Paying Friends Through a Mobile Payment App

Mobile payment apps are changing the way we do business, but they can also be convenient ways to send money to friends and family. It’s easier than ever to send money to the people who need it, but also easier than ever for hackers to gain access to that money before it gets where you want it. How do you keep yourself and your money safe, while also being able to access the convenience of mobile payment apps? How Mobile Payment Apps Work You can pay using your phone, even without apps. Some companies, such as your phone company, allow you to pay your bill using standard text messaging....
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How Facial Recognition Software Works

If you’ve uploaded pictures to Facebook recently, you might have noticed that it has the uncanny ability to recognize people's faces. This is just one example of high-tech facial recognition software in action. Here’s what you need to know about this emerging technology. How Facial Recognition Software Works You’ve never given much thought to how you recognize a face, and probably even less to how a computer would do it. Still, it’s not news that human faces have certain qualities you recognize. The spacing of eyes on a face, the position and width of a nose, the shape of a hairline and ...
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Pokémon Go Real World Risks and Safety Tips

The goal of this game is quite the opposite of all other games- to get you out into the world and interacting with other people playing the game. If anything, parents have been applauding this game for getting their children off of the couch and out getting some actual exercise. So far, my favorite headline about the game has been “Sore Legs Become Pandemic As Pokémon Go Players Accidentally Get Exercise.”  However, I’ve also stumbled upon some other news headlines that are quite worrisome, that affect people’s virtual and physical privacy. As a result, instead of writing a typical artic...
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Pokémon Go Parents Guide for Children

One of the great things about this game is that is popular amongst both children and adults, so our main suggestion is to play with them. This can be a great opportunity for you to engage and play along with your children! First things first, with all apps your children are interested in, download the app and play it yourself to become familiar with what your children will be doing.  This way, you can become more informed about the gameplay, and you can talk to your child about how to be safe while using it. This is part two of a three part series where we are going to delve into examini...
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Pokémon Go Cyber Security and Privacy Guidelines

In one way or another, you’ve probably heard of Pokémon Go, the latest new app that seems to be taking over smartphones everywhere. When I first heard about the app, it piqued my curiosity, given my passion for cyber security. Admittedly, I became addicted immediately, which lead me to research how the game works, how to play it, and what the possible security risks are that come along with the game. Firstly, it is important to note that this game is not your average smartphone game. It uses a technology known as augmented reality, which is a blend of real life and technology. There are m...
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What Is Smishing?

A form of phishing, smishing is when someone tries to trick you into giving them your private information via a text or SMS message. Smishing is becoming an emerging and growing threat in the world of online security. Read on to learn what smishing is and how you can protect yourself against it. Put simply, smishing is any kind of phishing that involves a text message. Often times, this form of phishing involves a text message in an SMS or a phone number. Smishing is particularly scary because sometimes people tend to be more inclined to trust a text message than an email. Most people a...
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DefCon 24- Hacking to Make the World a Better Place

Did you know that an attacker can flood your house via the water dispenser on your connected refrigerator? Or that bluetooth enabled locks can be picked from ¼ of a mile away using radio frequencies? I didn’t either, until I attended this year’s DefCon 24, an annual hacking convention in Las Vegas. While a hotel in Las Vegas full of 22,000 hackers sounds like it might not be a good idea, it’s just the opposite. The purpose of this conference is to bring together Internet security professionals from all over the world to help educate, inform and learn how to make the Internet a safer place...
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How to Avoid Public Wi-Fi Woes on a Business Trip

As summer arrives, it’s not just families that will be filling airports and hotels. While other people may be vacationing, business travelers will continue to work their way around the country and the world, often using unsafe public Wi-Fi.

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Norton @ DefCon

This year, Norton visited DefCon 24, a hacking conference held in Las Vegas. Established in 1993, this conference is designed to bring together people from all realms of the Internet security sector to explore the latest threats that are currently on the Internet, and to learn how to get ahead of them. This year, the conference had a record-breaking attendance of 22,000 people ranging from hackers, coders, journalists (me!), security researchers and even federal government employees. This was my first time attending this conference, and although I did my research on it, it was beyond my e...
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Your Identity Is Connected to All of Your Devices. Here's How to Protect It.

You don’t have to be a super geek to protect yourself from cyber criminals and hackers. Sure they might know more about computers and software than you do. However, there are basic defenses available to help you stand up against even the most sophisticated online threats. Today, most of us have multiple devices to access the Internet. All of these devices create a latticework of information that links to you personally. If one device is unprotected, it could be compromised in a way that affects all the others. That’s because most of us use different devices to access many of the same pers...
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Pop-Cultural Relevance of Hacking in Today's World

When hacking was first introduced in film and television, it was nowhere near as prevalent as it is today. The threat landscape was years away from becoming what it is now, so hacking and cybercrime wasn’t quite the household name it is today, therefore, there was a wide unfamiliarity of it within the public eye. Directors and writers have struggled with how to portray hacking in film simply because the act of hacking in real life is not very interesting or visually compelling. It’s just lines of code scrolling down a computer screen. In order to keep the viewer entertained they used chee...
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Software Terms of Service and Privacy Policies Explained

If you’re like most people, you don’t read the Terms of Service when you get a new app or buy a new device. That’s a big mistake, because a lot of apps on the market that are less-than-ideal, known as “grayware,” count on you allowing them access to your information. They know most people don’t read the Terms of Service, so their Terms of Service include language authorizing a massive invasion of your privacy. At the same time, you might have noticed that most Terms of Service is just boilerplate. How do you read the Terms of Service and find out what you need to know about privacy without...
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Sneaky Spammer Tactics and How To Avoid Them

Spam is a problem on the Internet, coming at us from just about every angle of the online space. Some spammers develop sophisticated, well-planned strategies, while others can be sloppy and still drive results. Either way, spam tactics come in a variety of shades, and it’s up to users to identify signals early on and avoid unsolicited content. Here’s a look at some spam tactics used in popular Internet spaces. Become familiar with these tactics to help identify them and avoid them whenever possible.  Spam on Social Media  A lot of the time, spam on social media is just bad social med...
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How To Talk to Your Kids About Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying is not very different from the ill reputed bullying that happens in the school yard. It has the same psychological and social implication that leaves the formative minds of children insecure. What makes cyberbullying a little more intense than bullying is it not limited to the school yard. According to a 2015 survey 34.4% of students between the ages of 11 and 15 have been cyberbullied. This includes children who have been threatened online to be hurt, had rumors spread about them, or had mean and hurtful comments or pictures of them online. This onslaught of hateful messag...
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Can a mobile phone battery track you?

With this little known exploit, a mobile phone’s battery life can actually be used to track online behavior. Security researchers have found that the battery status API of mobile devices can be used to track people online. In some instances, this can be used to upsell services purchased through a mobile app, ride sharing “surge pricing” for example. How else can this be used? Here’s what you need to know about the privacy and security issues raised. What is the Battery Status API The Battery Status API was introduced in HTML5, and this was intended to give site owners information so th...
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Can the Elections Get Hacked?

The security of electronic voting machines has been the subject of scrutiny, just before the November U.S. presidential elections. Are they secure? Are they anonymous? And if the answer is yes, how can we possibly know? A Symantec security expert recently demonstrated just what a motivated hacker can do to undermine the election by hacking an electronic voting machine.  Can Hackers Hack the Election? At the Black Hat convention this year, Symantec’s Brian Varner demonstrated a security flaw in an electronic voting machine and the smart card a voter would use to place their vote. Using...
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The Basic Steps to Online Safety and Security- NCSAM Week 1

Since our physical world has become so integrated with our technology, it’s not as easy as to protect it back when all we had to worry about was our computers and laptops. However, in this day and age, that is not the case. The threat landscape has evolved just as our technology has. The more devices that are out there equal more things for cybercriminals to attack. Personal cybersecurity is a now a multi-pronged approach. It’s not as simple as installing antivirus on a computer anymore. A good foundation to personal cybersecurity is knowledge. Since threats don’t come solely in digital f...
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From the Break Room to the Boardroom: Creating a Culture of Cybersecurity in the Workplace

Whether you own a small business or a big one, you live in a world where cybersecurity is of paramount importance. Big business, small business, academic institutions, government agencies, nonprofits… all of these need to take an interest in cybersecurity or pay the price. It’s a matter or success, but also a matter of national security. Those working in critical infrastructure have a special obligation to make sure that they’re securing the workplace. Here are some of the best ways to create a culture of cybersecurity where you work. It All Starts With Education and Training Cybersecuri...
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Online Harassment: Halting a Disturbing 'New Normal'

A new survey uncovers the prevalence of harassment against men in the online world and suggests ways to combat it. ​ On the face of it, Gold Coast Titans National Rugby League (NRL) player Jarryd Hayne hardly seems a likely candidate for cyberbullying. The former Parramatta Eels, San Francisco 49ers and Fiji rugby sevens superstar holds an elite place in Australian rugby league history, having been awarded the Dally M Medal twice as the NRL's player of the year. He has represented Australia and Fiji and in 2009 was also named the Rugby League International Federation’s International Pla...
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Stop Stressing: 10 Internet Safety Rules To Help Keep Your Family Safe Online

Children today can access more information than any generation before. Because of the Internet they now have a wealth of information that can enrich their lives in new and wondrous ways. But the Internet also has the potential to harm us, and the people we love. Too often we read about another company falling victim to a cyber attack, or a friend’s email or social network account being hacked. These dangers are real. And though there are real reasons to protect your kids and your data from cyber thieves, you shouldn’t need to shy away from the advantages the Internet has to offer your f...
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Parents Best Practices to Social Media Security

With connected kids today, it can be a full-time job for parents to be able to monitor their online activities. We’ve put together some helpful tips and guidelines so that you and your whole family can enjoy social media safely.

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How To Recognize and Protect Yourself from Cybercrime

Cybercrime is a growing threat in 2016. You might think that the only form of cybercrime you have to worry about is hackers stealing your financial information. Unfortunately there are far more concerns than just basic financial ones. When you see the full list of cybercrimes out there, you might be tempted to stop using the Internet entirely. However, such drastic measures are not necessary. All you need to do to protect yourself is take some basic precautions and know who to contact when you see others engaged in criminal activities online. ​What Is Cybercrime? Cybercrime is any ...
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Teach Your Kids to Avoid Online Scams

Surfing the Internet means possible exposure to online scams, something your children might not have any concept of. If you’re allowing them to go online, it’s imperative that you discuss online scams. Such scams come in a variety of guises, including those that specifically target children. Let’s look at how to best protect your kiddies from those who would scam them: Educate Yourself First The first step in protecting your children from online scams is to educate yourself on the types of scams currently floating around the Internet. One type of scam is the free trial offer, which clai...
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New Year, Renewed Readiness

With a new year comes renewed excitement, refreshed minds and revitalized focus for all that lies ahead. The same is unfortunately true for the cybercriminals we are up against.

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The 5 Stages of Phone Loss Grief

It’s happened to most of us. That urge to look at your phone has become a part of everyday life. Maybe you are expecting a phone call, or perhaps you want to know how many ‘likes’ that picture of your cat has earned. Maybe it’s just that fix your life needs at that moment that only a smartphone can give you. You rummage through your pocket to find it with no luck. Perhaps it’s in the other one. Nope. You try your bag. Nope, again. You break into a sweat. After what seems like an eternity, you come to the crushing realization that you have lost one of the most valuable material possessions...
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Happy Thanksgiving! Celebrating the Things That Keep us Safe

Happy Thanksgiving from Norton!

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12 Days of Norton Tips

We’re counting down days until Christmas is here,
And gifting you cool security tips to be of good cheer,

And make sure this season is the best of your year.

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7 Dos and Don’ts of Secure Online Tax Filing

Online fraud is one of fastest growing crimes of our time. The ability to be anonymous, and the fact that it can be performed anywhere in the world makes it very difficult, if not impossible, for law enforcement to curb it. As online fraud continues to grow, an unfortunate number of American citizens might face this scenario: It’s tax season, and you are getting your paperwork together in order to file your taxes. During the process you receive an email from the IRS stating “Congratulations on filing your tax return.” This is a normal email you would expect after you file taxes, however, ...
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Data Privacy Day 2016: Ten Ways to Keep Your Data Private

The Internet has blurred the lines between real world and the virtual one. Technology is barreling into our hands through smartphones at an unbelievable pace. While this is good for productivity and progress, it makes it easy for thieves to do their job. The anonymity and location independence that comes with the Internet muddles the moral character of even the most ethical person. One can’t assume your phone and the information it stores is safe from the malicious intentions of the human mind. Data Privacy Day (DPD), is an international effort held annually on January 28 in order to hel...
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Safe Online Shopping Tips for The Holiday Season

The holidays are just around the corner, and that means many of us will be making purchases online to avoid large crowds and busy mall traffic. While online shopping has made our lives easier, it also exposes new weaknesses with the information we use to make those very purchases. The holiday season is a lucrative time for online retailers and cybercriminals see this as an opportunity to profit as well. In fact, Norton Safe Web found that shopping sites are amongst the top ten most frequently exploited websites. An additional concern is bogus e-commerce websites, which are made to look le...
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Happy Halloween From Norton by Symantec!

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Online Christmas Shopping: Naughty or Nice?

Surprisingly, in this always-connected day and age, people surveyed by Norton in Australia and New Zealand said they plan to do less than 40% of their Christmas shopping online. Norton released results of their Online Shopping Survey just in time for the holidays, when online retailers offer sales to lure shoppers into buying presents for themselves and others. However, the survey results may indicate those promotions are not enough to encourage security-concerned shoppers to buy online. While concerns about online shopping risks are high, only 23 % of people in Australia and 20% of peop...
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How a VPN Can Help Hide Your Search History

Most of us use search engines on a daily basis. It’s become automatic. If we don’t know what something is, or hear a word that we can’t define, we go online and type the term into our favorite search engine. And voila, we have our answer in seconds. But did you ever stop to wonder what happens to your searches?

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The 12 Days of Norton

"We’re counting down days until Christmas is here,
And gifting you cool security tips to be of good cheer,

And make sure this season is the best of your year."

Join us every day for a new Norton tip to keep your holidays merry and bright. A secure holiday is a happy holiday with Norton.

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Holiday Travelers' Tips for Device Security in Airports

As the most popular travel days of the year approach, many holiday travelers are creating mental checklists for navigating busy airports — most likely with their trusty mobile devices in hand and laptops in their bags. To save fliers the headache and heartbreak of having their devices compromised en route to Grandma’s house, here’s a checklist to keep smartphones, tablets, and laptops safe while spending time in an airport. 

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How to Let Go of Old Tech Securely and Responsibly

According to several studies on cost of ownership, users should replace their computer devices every four years. Not everyone will need to upgrade his or her computer every four years, but it’s a good rule to follow to ensure your data is safe and properly protected online. To help you remember, every time we have a leap year ask yourself: when was the last time I bought a new computer? If you can’t remember, chances are you may be due for an upgrade. Once you’re ready to make the switch, you’ll need to follow a few steps to ensure your old technology has been properly wiped and recycled,...
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Why Hackers Love Public WiFi

A free Wi-Fi connection in a public space can seem like a lifesaver when you’re on the go. But if you decide to use public Wi-Fi, just be aware that you could be making yourself an easy target for hackers — and putting your information and more at risk. Online Crime Takes Many Forms The Norton Cybersecurity Insights Report announced that 594 million people around the world were victims of cybercrime in 2015, with 21% of Americans getting their email hacked and 12% having their financial data stolen after shopping online. With public Wi-Fi available everywhere, what seems like a conveni...
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Keep Your Home Wi-Fi Safe in 7 Simple Steps

It is beginning to feel like the Internet is a basic necessity for existence in the 21st century. With all our devices connected to the Internet, we have an indescribable physical mobility that leads to increased productivity. It is safe to say that the Internet is for everyone and does not limit itself to the tech savvy. Unfortunately, when not safeguarded, the Internet can be a playground for nefarious activities caused by people with malicious intent.   Take a home wireless network as an example. Almost every member of the family accesses it through laptops, PCs, cell phones and tablet...
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How to Securely Set Up Your Home Wi-Fi Router

Wireless Internet access is one of the modern conveniences of our time. However, your home wireless router can also be an access point for hackers. If your Wi-Fi router isn’t secured properly, you could be letting anyone with a wireless-enabled device gain access to your home network. That means you’re opening up your emails, banking information, and maybe even details of your smart home’s daily schedule to criminals.  Basic Wireless Security Every router should have a password to keep out the bad guys. Some routers come with default passwords, but you should change these during setup. C...
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What Is VoIP?

VoIP is an acronym for “voice over Internet Protocol.” That means any phone call that takes place over the Internet, rather than on landlines or through mobile towers. This alternative to traditional phone calls is gaining in popularity exponentially with both companies and consumers. Skype, Google Voice, and FaceTime are well-known and extremely popular examples of Internet telephony services. The question is: Are phone calls made over the Internet vulnerable to standard online security risks? The answer is yes, as is any other information transmitted this way, especially in light of recent hacks to VoIP apps. Read on to find out how to secure your VoIP calls. 

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How To Set Up and Secure Your New Tech

Congratulations on your new device! You’re likely caught up in the fun of having a new gadget, and probably shopping for a shiny (or sparkly) new case. While a case protects your device from nature and clumsy hands, it doesn’t make your phone absolutely safe. Why? Because it doesn’t protect what matters most—your information. Think about all that you do on your devices—sharing precious photos, ordering your favorite latte, and shopping. With the rise of cybercrime and the high costs associated with it, it’s even more important that you learn how to protect what matters most—the personal i...
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Data Breaches That Made Headlines in 2016

980 data breaches occurred in 2016. That left an approximate 35,233,317 known records exposed. Over the years, data breaches have become more sophisticated, and cybercriminals target both large corporations and small businesses. 2016 saw a string of data breaches that left sensitive information of millions of people at the mercy of cybercriminals. In addition to financial consequences, these data breaches ruined customer trust and the reputation of the companies in question. As we look back at 2016 here are some of the most impactful data breaches that shook the world. 117 Million Lin...
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Netiquette For Parents

No one said parenting is easy. Especially when your children are doing things in the cyber world that you as a child never imagined. With the wealth of information and non-traditional methods of making friends and hanging out, our children are no doubt having a good time, thanks to the advancements in technology. But that still doesn’t mean they have the liberty to do as they please at the expense of others. One of the most important aspects of parenting is setting a good example. Your kids will closely watch your online manners and etiquette. You need to be aware and educated about net...
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The Importance of Data Back-Up

Have you ever lost a lot of really important data? Or, alternately, have you ever had a moment of panic where you thought you did? Whether it’s images of a family vacation, a report from work or a semester’s worth of homework, you probably have data on your computer that’s not just valuable, it’s too valuable to lose. Backing up your data regularly will help you to avoid the crushing feeling that comes with finding out that all your hard work and treasured memories are gone. The Importance of Backing Up Let’s face it, no matter how great your computer or external hard drive are, one da...
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