What you need to know about Encrypting Data

Do you store confidential data for your PhD? Does this data contain Personally Identifiable Information? If so, you should encrypt it.

Firstly, you should encrypt the information on your computer anyway. This means that if your computer is ever stolen, the first thing the thieves will do is wipe it, so your data won’t be going anywhere. This is called ‘Full Disk Encryption’. On Mac, it is available for all recent versions of MacOs (as well as iOS), while for Windows users, it is only available on Windows10 Pro.

Instruction for Mac users are here, while for Windows Users, its here. You should also do this for your mobile – both Android and iOS offer this service and again, it means that if your phone is stolen, it will be wiped without people getting access to your apps, contacts, etc.

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What you need to know about Passwords

Do you know what your online passwords are? If you do, you might need to reconsider how you manage your passwords!

Your username and password are what keeps other people from getting access to your online services. Whether its your email, insurance, newspaper or social media accounts, it is your username and password which tells the website to allow you in but keep all other people out. Passwords, however, are often seen by people as an inconvenience and a hassle. People find it hard to remember them and the majority of people who use the internet have bad habits when it comes to managing their passwords. This is exploited by cybercriminals who use many techniques to try and capture your password, either from you or from the website where it is stored.

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