3DSC 2.13: Migrate to Private & Secure Email Provider

Today I am asking you to to setup a private and secure email account. I realize that many of my readers are already using ProtonMail (but I also know that some are not). If you are using ProtonMail, don’t worry – I have included tasks for users at all levels of the email migration process.

Continue reading “3DSC 2.13: Migrate to Private & Secure Email Provider”

3DSC 2.0: (Almost) Halfway Point

Hey guys, I just wanted to take a second to acknowledge that we are almost at the halfway point in the Thirty Day Security Challenge (3DSC) 2.0! I also want to briefly recap what we’ve covered. If you’re just joining us here this is also a great place to start getting caught up. Continue reading “3DSC 2.0: (Almost) Halfway Point”

3DSC 2.11: Install a Password Manager

Today’s task is install a password manager on your computer and/or phone. This is an absolutely critical step.  Future posts in this series will ask that you change current passwords and create new accounts with good, strong passwords.  Being limited to feeble human memory requires most of us to choose poor passwords.  We use the same ones on multiple accounts and some of the new ones we will create this month will probably be lost or forgotten.  Storing passwords insecurely on a Word document or spreadsheet isn’t a great idea, either, since it’s really vulnerable to loss.  The password manager will solve these problems for us by creating good passwords, recalling them for us, and storing them securely. Continue reading “3DSC 2.11: Install a Password Manager”

3DSC 2.10: Firefox Security & Privacy Add-ons

Earlier this week I recommended that you install Mozilla Firefox and adjust its privacy and security settings, and yesterday I talked about installing NoScript. Both of these tasks have made Firefox much more private and secure. Today I will ask you to install three more Firefox security and privacy add-ons, and remove some others.

Continue reading “3DSC 2.10: Firefox Security & Privacy Add-ons”

3DSC 2.9: NoScript Security Suite

NoScript Security Suite

Difficulty: Hard. Installation is easy, but learning to use NoScript can be challenging. Please refer to the video
Active Time: 1 minute to install, 30 minutes to learn
What it Protects You From: Executable web content (JavaScript, Java, Flash, Silverlight, et. al.),  cross-site scripting (XSS), click-jacking, automatic boundary enforcement

Continue reading “3DSC 2.9: NoScript Security Suite”

3DSC 2.8: Adjust Firefox Settings for Security

Yesterday we began to shift our focus outward from the local system.  Today we will continue this shift by installing Firefox and modifying some of its settings.  Browser security and privacy settings play a big role in how easily websites can track you.  Firefox gives you the maximum flexibility to control these settings to your benefit.  It also has one other huge benefit that other browsers do not, and we will discuss this tomorrow. Continue reading “3DSC 2.8: Adjust Firefox Settings for Security”

3DSC 2.7: Use a Virtual Private Network

Today’s task is to purchase a virtual private network service.  A virtual private network (VPN) is one of those things that I just could not live without.  After using one for so many years it feels like wearing a seatbelt – I can go on without it, but I’m going to be pretty uncomfortable the whole time. I hope I’m preaching to the converted at this point, but if you still don’t have a VPN, get one and USE IT! Continue reading “3DSC 2.7: Use a Virtual Private Network”

3DSC 2.6: Full Disk Encryption

Readers of the Your Ultimate Security Guide series and the Complete Privacy and Security Desk Reference know that I am whole-heartedly in favor of full disk encryption. If you haven’t yet implemented this on your machine, I hope now is when you jump in. Continue reading “3DSC 2.6: Full Disk Encryption”

3DSC 2.4: Antivirus and Anti-Malware Scan

This weekend’s project is twofold.  First, make sure your computer is running an up-to-date antivirus application. There is a good chance many of you already are.  If you are running Windows 7 or 10 you probably have a variation of Windows Defender or Microsoft Security Essentials.  You may also have a version of a premium antivirus suite like McAfee or Norton.  If you do not already have antivirus program you should install one immediately, even if you are a Mac user. Continue reading “3DSC 2.4: Antivirus and Anti-Malware Scan”

3DSC 2.3: Perform an Application Audit

Securing your local system is critical to computer security. If the local system has security holes, any subsequent measures taken later on cannot be trusted. Online accounts cannot be trusted if the machine is infected with a keylogger that captures their passwords. Secure communications cannot be trusted if the computer is being eavesdropped on. Encrypted containers cannot be trusted if the files they contain are being exfiltrated off of the machine. One way we can secure the local system is the limit the applications that have access to files. The first step is to perform an application audit.

Continue reading “3DSC 2.3: Perform an Application Audit”