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Data-Protection-21As a knowledgeable computer user, you’re well-aware of the hackers and viruses that can invade your system. Such intrusions can steal or damage valuable business data, such as customer credit card numbers or employee Social Security numbers. This is why you’ve spent money on a firewall and a security program to protect your network. You can enhance these digital measures by implementing physical methods that cost nothing.

Start by making sure that none of your screens face an open window, lobby, or public corridor. Otherwise, passersby can easily look at and record what you’re entering. Don’t be fooled by being on an upper floor. Someone in the next building can still watch your display by using a pair of high-powered binoculars. To prevent this spying, turn your monitors so they face a blank wall. Only the person at the computer can then view the screen.

Avoid logging in when you use the free wi-fi services available at coffeehouses or some public transportation. Because access is not secure, hackers can easily tap in to spy on what you’re doing. Don not publicly browse such sites as your company database, your email account, or financial website. If you want to access such confidential pages, sign up for paid wireless Internet access, which offers a layer of security.

Do not put old and unused smartphones, laptops, or tablets in unlocked cabinets or on a shelf. Someone could easily take them without you noticing, and access whatever information is stored on their hard drives. Store old technology in locked cabinets inside locked room. If you want to recycle the devices, such as by donating them to charity, wipe out their hard drives first by using hard drive erasure software.

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