November 26, 2015

2008 Data Security Buyer's Guide: 4 Areas Where You’re Most at Risk

-A A +A

2008 Data Security Buyer's Guide: 4 Areas Where You’re Most at Risk

Think again before you input your clients' personal information into your smart phone or computer. You might be putting sensitive information at risk for theft. Learn how to keep your information secure.

In this Guide

1.On the Computer

Risk: An unattended computer, in any environment, is always at risk. In minutes, a data thief can plug in a USB flash drive, copy files, and walk away with a career’s worth of information. Then there’s the danger of theft, especially with laptops.

Solutions: Have a log-in password and password authentication to copy files or change system settings; a plug-in USB fingerprint reader; security cables; or subscription to a PC recovery service.

2. Online

Risk: All types of threats abound on the Web. Hackers want into your computer and network and are very creative in their efforts to wreak havoc.

Solutions: A firewall and a security software suite, always on, and automatically updated. Also, take common sense steps. For example, don’t launch unexpected links or attachments; ignore requests for personal information or account numbers that come to you via e-mail; only download files from trusted sites; and check a site’s privacy policies before completing online forms.

3. On a Network

Risk: Wi-Fi hotspots are a great convenience, but also an invitation to prying eyes. If unauthorized users can connect to the network, they can steal files, corrupt data, install spyware.

Solutions: A network firewall; log-on passwords; and password-protected access to authorized users and devices. Also, if you’re working with sensitive client data in public places, get a privacy filter.

4. Talking on a Cell Phone

Risk: When you’re in public talking on a cell phone, you’re broadcasting one end of a conversation to anyone within earshot.

Solution: Use discretion when discussing business with clients; move to a more private space and speak in softer tones. And remember, smart phones are as much phones as they are mini computers. So the same security dangers for PCs, holds true for smart phones too. Learn about  and activate built-in security features to your smart phone, and also subscribe to its security suite.

No votes yet
Your rating: None

Notice: The information on this page may not be current. The REALTOR® Magazine archive is a collection of content previously published on The archive pages are not updated and may no longer be accurate. Users must independently verify the accuracy and currency of the information found here. The National Association disclaims all liability for any loss or injury resulting from the use of the information or data found on this page.