University of Wisconsin–Madison
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7 simple steps to make your devices more secure

Keeping your devices safe can appear daunting, but the following 7 steps go a long way toward keeping your devices and personal data safer.

Protect yourself from viruses and other malware.

Use a firewall

  •  A firewall protects your computer against attack from the network by controlling incoming and/or outgoing network traffic. Most computer operating systems have built-in software firewalls, but you need to make sure they are turned on.

Keep your devices’ operating systems up to date

Protect your NetID and password

  • Use strong passwords
  • Never share or reveal passwords
  • Always store passwords securely, i.e. encrypted, or in a locked cabinet.

Protect your NetID and password

  • Install software to secure your wireless connection, e.g., WiscVPN

Backup your data

Prevent unauthorized use and device theft

  • Never leave your devices unattended
  • Always protect your devices with a password, passcode, swipe-to-unlock pattern, or other security measure.

Use email and the web safely

  • Don’t click on unsolicited links or attachments in emails, or disclose identity information (e.g., SSN, birthdays, etc.) online, including social networking sites.