The latest news on cloud security issues involves alleged hackers who broke into Apple iCloud accounts to steal personal photos of famous female celebrities like Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton. While much speculation exists as to the validity of the accusations against the unknown hackers, if the stories are true it could signal a major shift in thinking about cloud computing.
If the accounts of these famous celebs can be hacked then the risk for your account to be hacked is also significant. This could be potentially damaging if you maintain personal information on remote servers, especially if you are prone to keeping intimate selfies on your cloud storage. A few simple steps are all you need however to make tighten up your cloud security:
2 step Verification:
This process requires two things: the first is your password for the account and the other is access to your phone for the authentication code that will be sent when someone attempts to sign in to your account. If you don’t use your phone, you can opt for an email with the authentication code. This process is a highly effective deterrent against hackers who often use simple tricks to guess at passwords, but they won’t have your phone to get the authentication code. A large number of services offer two-step authentication, such as iCloud, Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail and many other websites.
Delete from iCloud too:
If you delete the photos you don’t like from your phone camera, it doesn’t mean it has also been deleted from iCloud. You have to delete them separately because iCloud itself is backing up all your photos and selected data from your phone, so it has a copy of whatever exists on your phone memory. Another method that you can use is to simply disconnect your iCloud account to keep all your photos from getting uploaded online automatically.
Vary your password and use uncommon words or phrases:
Most people try to use one specific password for all the accounts they have but this practice helps hackers more than anything because if they are able to obtain your password for one account they automatically have access to all of your other accounts. Make sure you vary your passwords from one account to the other, and also make sure that you avoid simple and predictable words for your passwords. Mix your passwords up by using numbers and non-standard characters whenever possible. To make things easier to remember you can structure passwords as if they were mini-phrases.
Don’t save passwords:
Most of us have several types of accounts, including banking, cloud security access, gaming and social media. Browsers are all equipped with the ability to save your password so you don’t have to enter it every time you want access to a particular website. This is very convenient and saves a lot of time, but it does allow anyone who sits at your computer the ability to automatically log into any of your accounts without your permission. The best practice is to turn off the feature of your browser that saves passwords. It may be difficult to remember all of them, so keep them written down on paper in a secure location.
Here is how you can turn on two-step verification for your iCloud account:
1. After logging into My Apple ID, go to “Manage your Apple ID and sign”
2. Click “Password and Security”
3. Now select “Get Started” under “Two-step Verification”
4. Now select a phone number or email address where you’d like to get the verification code.
Note: You should choose the one that is most convenient for you to access anytime you try to log in.