Happy New Year!

The beginning of a New Year is a good time to form new habits in relation to computer security.

Here is a couple of ideas which will help to protect your computer and data in 2017


We all do it, set passwords that are easy to remember. Birthdays, Children, Partner or Pet names and then use the same password for everything…sound familiar?

So what is the best practice for choosing and storing a password?

Your password should contain at least 16 characters and have a combination of numbers, symbols and uppercase/lowercase letters. Don’t use names, dictionary words or any repetition.

Sounds good but how do you remember it?

We recommend a phrase or combining a number or words together to form your complex password.

Storing your password securely is very important. Do not write down your password on a Post-It Note, in a diary, on a piece of paper and never share your passwords with anyone. If you think someone knows a password, change it immediately. There are some great free products like LastPass that can help you to keep your passwords secure and be accessible from a number of devices like your mobile phone.

Above all, always use different passwords for any online logins such as banking, social media and email. Also, where possible use a two-factor authentication process. An example of this is where a PIN number is sent to your mobile phone as an additional level of security to identify you.


Email security has become very important as email scams are on the increase.

Some tips to help you identify fake emails are:

  1. Do you recognise the senders email address?
  2. Do you recognise any of the other recipients of the Email?
  3. Does the subject line relate to the email content?
  4. Was the email sent in office hours?
  5. Has the email got good grammar and spelling?
  6. Are there any hyperlinks in the email, do they go to the same website if you hover your mouse over them?
  7. Are there any unexpected attachments to the email?
  8. What are the file types for the attachments, safe file types are .txt, .pdf, .xlsx, .docx, .jpg, .csx
  9. Is the email asking you to provide information to avoid a penalty or receive a financial gain?

If you were not expecting this email from a known sender, do not click on any links and do not open any attachments. Definitely do not reply or forward email and never provide personal information. Simply delete the email or if you are unsure contact the sender directly prior to opening the email (preferably by phone!)

If you suspect you have opened a suspicious email and you are concerned please contact us.

We hope these tips will help with happy computing in 2017.