Technological innovation brings with it an unparalleled convenience. Tasks that would take days are the work of minutes. Conversations between people around the world can happen in real time. You can even control your television from your phone.
With that progress however, comes vulnerability.
From your radio frequency id-powered bus pass to your shiny new Google Glasses, most electronic things you own are the potential target of hackers. If your device plugs into a network somewhere, it's possible that it can be harnessed by somebody else. These days, a sophisticated criminal can do just about everything short of operating your toaster.
A recent article in Slate outlined the risk inherent in being a technologically savvy person, and highlighted how important it is to take security measures.
"How should we think about our constant vulnerability? I make a daily assumption that everything I do is hackable, but almost nothing I do is worth hacking. I have an awareness of potential vulnerabilities, and I'm trying to develop an evolving set of street smarts. You should, too," writes author Amy Webb.
One suggestion she makes is to make your passwords long enough that they are hard to crack, but straightforward enough that they are easy to remember. Hacking algorithms mean that a short complicated passwords, like "gF5yz", are actually more vulnerable than a natural language sentence, like "mypandanuzzles45kittens." In addition, Webb cautions, you should be changing passwords frequently.
Another good piece of advice is to turn off any network-connected devices when they're not in use. Not only will this help prevent intrusions, it will also save you money on electric bills.
If your company deals with data, it needs to be protected. Obtaining IT contractor liability insurance is one step you can take towards making sure that you're covered.