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Keep personal info secure

Taking that Facebook quiz to find out one’s spirit animal might seem like harmless fun, but one wrong click could put a person’s online data at risk. To help combat security threats, Better Business Bureau is participating in Data Privacy Day 2016.

This year’s theme is “Respecting Privacy, Safeguarding Data and Enabling Trust.” The day is recognized annually on Jan. 28 to promote awareness on the importance of online privacy and protecting your personal information.

According to a survey conducted by the National Cyber Security Alliance and Zogby International only 26 percent of Americans felt “their home computer was safe from viruses” while a mere 21 percent felt safe from hackers.

The job of keeping online data secure is shared by both businesses and citizens.

Business professionals can ensure they are keeping their customers’ personal information safe by participating in the following business practices:

  • Be transparent: Be open with your clients on how personal information is collected, used and shared.

  • Communication is key: Keep an open dialogue with the public about what privacy means to organizations and how it is maintained.

  • Keep employees accountable: Demonstrate to your employees the vital role they play in keeping customers data secure. Empower your team to take charge on maintaining privacy.

    Likewise, citizens can be equally as vigilant when protecting their personal information.

  • Be WiFi wise: Not all public wireless networks and hotspots are secure, which could result in someone gaining access to a computer or mobile device. Limit access on public WiFi and avoid logging into key accounts.

  • Lock it up: Just as someone would lock the front door, consumers need to secure their devices. Use strong passwords or passcodes to lock tablets and smartphones.

  • Think before clicking: Be wary of communications that urge you to act immediately or offers something that sounds too good to be true.

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