We all know that being organized helps us achieve our goals and make better use of our time. But are we doing the same with our digital security? Learn about these 7 organization techniques to enhance the security of your digital identity and thus get the most out of it to protect what matters most!
Being organized is particularly important for prioritizing activities, setting and achieving goals, and being less forgetful. It also makes it easy to collaborate with others and helps increase productivity and save time and money.
Surely you already know the benefits of being organized, but it is easier said than done. On the one hand, if you are not an organized person, it is very common not to find your car keys, to be late for meetings, or to miss your gym in a timely manner. On the other hand, even if you’re the organized type of person, there’s a good chance this won’t be the case when it comes to organizing your security routine and protecting your digital identity.
In this article, we’re going to share 7 organization techniques that will help you stay one step ahead and be proactive in applying cybersecurity to strengthen your digital identity.
7 organization techniques to enhance the security of your Digital Identity
1. Do the hardest task first (Eat your frog first)
Brian Tracy stated, “If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning.” Eating the frog means that you simply execute it, otherwise the frog is going to eat you, which means that you will end up prolonging it all day, incurring more effort and with less result.
We share some tasks for which it is important to organize yourself to do them first, either because of their relevance, complexity and/or monotony, such as:
- Implement security technology by taking a defense-in-depth or layered approach . Each layer is a protection mechanism such as having a VPN (virtual private network), firewall, virus/malware protection, software update and automatic backup. With multiple layers, if one defense fails, the other is there to block or minimize an attack.
- Check your bank account statements, credit cards or personal credit reports to verify that your identity is not being stolen. This regular review allows you to detect suspicious situations early to reduce identity theft.
When you do the hardest task first, you’ll have a clearer mind and end up with more time to do the things you really love.
2. Perform critical activities in Monotask mode minimizing distractions
Multitasking is terrible for your concentration and productivity, and makes you more prone to making mistakes, also affecting your memory and even increasing stress.
Therefore, focus on a single task at a time when protecting your digital identity in activities such as:
- Set up strong passwords,
- Update your password manager,
- Activate second factor authentication (2FA) for your critical accounts, or
- Check if your accounts are found in recent data breaches (eg: haveibeenpwned.com ).
Remember to minimize distractions before performing these important tasks. When we talk about distractions we mean all kinds of distractions, especially audiovisual ones. So turn off notifications on your computer/cell phone, hide your phone, and don’t check email, social media, or the news. Take the opportunity to use a headset with music that allows you to focus. This is the best way to signal that you don’t want to be interrupted. Take the test, and you will see that you will thank yourself!
3. Organize the desk/workspace
Spending several minutes digging through a mountain of paper on your work table while trying to find a document is not a good use of your time. In addition, you can expose critical personal or organizational information.
In order to protect your digital identity and relevant data, it is essential to consider the following to maintain a clean desktop :
- Safeguard documents or devices with sensitive information (eg: bank statements, personal agendas, flash drives) in places with restricted access such as a drawer, cabinet or room with a key.
- Destroy this data when you decide to discard it, whether on physical or digital media.
If you keep your workspace tidy and with critical information protected, it will make you more efficient, and you will be more secure and calm.
4. Listen actively and think before doing
We can take it for granted that we listen and are listened to in the course of a conversation, but you’d be surprised how little we actually retain: research suggests it’s only 25-50% of what we hear. Active listening ensures that you are fully focused on what the other person is talking about and therefore correctly assimilating what they are saying. Not only will you improve your productivity, but you will also be able to detect risky situations and avoid scams.
In order to protect your digital identity, it is important to consider these aspects when having contact with companies, service providers or other parties:
- Question before sharing personal data with third parties, asking to know what they need it for, how they will protect it and if other alternative data can be used.
- Verify the identity of the other person, and when in doubt, verify that you have initiated the contact. Otherwise, it is best to end the conversation.
This is also applicable if you are the target of a phishing attack. The concept of “think before you click ” is one of the most important factors in terms of information security. Whenever you receive an email, download a file from the Internet, or click on a link, check the following:
- Don’t assume an email, text, or phone call is genuine.
- Don’t rush. A genuine merchant or person of good faith will not mind waiting a reasonable amount of time for you.
- Listen to your instincts. You are able to sense when something doesn’t feel right.
- Maintain control. Do not panic and make a decision that you later regret.
5. Take note of important things
With so many activities going on every day, it’s common to end up forgetting an important task, idea or thing. Our short-term memory is limited, so writing it down in a notebook, calendar, or other tool helps you revisit and make clear what you still need to do or consider.
This also applies when it comes to protecting your digital identity. It is necessary to identify and report suspicious activities that involve unusual behavior or activity and that may indicate a future crime or security incident. Here are some examples for reference:
- Receive an unsolicited request for personal data or a suspicious message.
- Receive systems’ failed access or account block messages.
- Noticing that your computer has slowed down or works in an unusual way.
The important thing is to have a written record in a certain place where you can easily go back and act on matters that are important. This way you will be more organized, you will feel more free and protected.
6. Eliminate threats and temptations with website blockers
Why spend precious energy exerting your own control, when you can simply automatically remove many of the threats and temptations while surfing the internet?
To minimize possible threats when you browse the internet, use an ads blocker (adware) and a website blocker. Quite possibly the virus/malware solution you use has this feature, so make sure you have it enabled in your browser.
Now to restrict access to those sites that distract you and decrease your productivity (eg: social media, sports news channels) you can use a website blocker. With it you can configure the sites you want to control and set specific time periods to restrict access. Activate this type of functionality when you work or study and free yourself from the burden of choosing!
7. Making bad security habits more expensive
Make a pact with a friend, family member, or colleague to introduce financial penalties for security habits that are detrimental to both of you. This will help you focus on the costs of bad habits, rather than their rewards. Here are some examples of poor security habits that you could attribute a financial penalty to:
- Use the same password to access more than one account or service (rather than a unique strong password for each).
- Opening a suspicious link or file infecting your device with viruses.
- Need to recover information from a backup and not have this information available.
For each of these cases, you can agree with the other person on a specific value as debt, which is of mutual interest, such as who will pay the bill next time you go to dinner together or having to wash the dishes. Define the rules of the game, be honest and keep a common record with the other person. In this way, both will help each other to stop adopting these bad security habits.
CiberSergei Didactic Resource to enhance the security of your Digital Identity
We have created the following tool to encourage you to remember these 7 organization techniques applied to security, and review them as many times as necessary in order to incorporate them into your day to day life. Simply drag the image with your mouse/finger from top to bottom to move on to the next technique. We hope that it brings about some sense of relief as you progress through the end of the 7 techniques!
7 organization techniques to enhance the security of your Digital Identity: Connecting the dots
By keeping your security organized, you’ll save energy and money by taking care of what matters most, and have more time to work on important tasks. Organization can also improve the flow of communication with your colleagues, so you can make your team more productive and have a safer environment.
So what are you doing today for your security so that tomorrow you are one step closer to where you want to be? It’s never too late to get started, the time is now!
Quote to Keep in Your Pocket
“Your identity is a mirror covered with dust. When you first look in the mirror, the truth about who you are and what you value is unclear. Getting organized and cleaning it may not be easy, but only when the dust is gone you will be able to see your true reflection.” – Jay Shetty
Security can give you the clarity you need to protect your identity and see what really matters to you!
If you want to know more about Productivity Hacks, I invite you to explore the section of CiberSergei Productivity Improvements . If you want to send a message to CiberSergei , visit the contact page here .