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The first week of Cybersecurity Awareness Month highlights best security practices and focuses on general cyber hygiene to keep your information safe.

As our lives have become increasingly dependent on technology, virtually all personal and business data is kept on internet-connected platforms, which can become a gold mine for bad actors. Own your role in cybersecurity by starting with the basics. Creating strong passwords and using multifactor authentication, backing up your data and updating your software are great places to start. This is a great way to Do Your Part #BeCyberSmart!

As a big step toward improving your password security, please consider a password manager. As a University employee, you are eligible to use LastPass Premium and LastPass Family for personal use at no cost.

In addition to LastPass, Finance and Operations IT also recommends BitWarden, KeePass, 1Password and Keeper, or even a cloud synchronized Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge account.

To better protect accounts that still use your “favorite” old password, enable two-factor authentication. Two-factor authentication adds thousands of times more protection than just a password. Keeping track of those two-factor tokens is easy using Google Authenticator or Authy which store an encrypted backup copy of your two-factor codes in the cloud.

If these cybersecurity tools sound like something you want to learn more about, here are links that will help you enable two-factor authentication on a number of sites and services that you’re probably using today:

If you’d like more information about any of this, contact your local IT support or your Finance and Operations IT Security Liaison Dan L. Barker at Barker123@unc.edu.

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