TODAY   |  February 01, 2013

3 online security holes you need to know about

Technology expert Omar Wasow gives an overview of what you should be looking out for to protect yourself on the Internet, including changing your passwords regularly and making sure your anti-virus software is up to date.

Share This:

This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> says it has been hit by chinese computer hackers a day after "the new york times" revealed its computers were also infiltrated. cyber attacks probably serve as a good reminder that all of us need to be concerned about online security. what you can do to protect yourself. omar, good morning. nice to see you. you're going to talk about some common holes in security that people need to plug and they need to plug quickly. and the first one is passwords. you don't even like the term passwords.

>> the number one security hole for most people is personal, their personal accounts get exposed when they have insecure passwords. people should be thinking about having something like a passphrase, which is two or three words that aren't going to show up in a dictionary, that are longer. it's harder to guess. that makes it much harder for somebody to crack that account.

>> and it is true, you need to have a different password or pass phrase for every account and site you're using?

>> that's exactly right. otherwise, somebody gets one of them and they can get into all your accounts. what becomes a challenge then is it's hard to remember all of those things. my recommendation there is to have a password manager .

>> give me a couple of examples.

>> like or one pass. you have to remember one password but they can help you manage the rest.

>> why are they harder to hack into from the outside?

>> they can be hacked, too, but the idea is that you have one especially difficult password that you do commit to memory but the others can then be managed across all of the -- you can make one database for all the rest.

>> you want us to update our anti-virus software and not only update but add more.

>> anti-virus software. one of the key ways people or computers get compromised, malware gets installed. viruses can share personal information . you can also have holes in ports. you need to install it, keep it up-to-date. otherwise it's no good. make sure your firewall is configured properly.

>> every time he you see that little window pop up, you say click yes, click now?

>> operate your operating system , web browser . keeping your system up-to-date is essential.

>> and you say we are our own worst enemies when it comes to this sort of thing. we get an e-mail and open it sometimes from someone we don't know. then it has a link on t we click on that link and that's a formula for disaster?

>> yes. it's important to have your guard up whenever you're on the internet. sometimes you're getting e-mails from people you trust because their accounts have been compromised. so even your friend of a friend network is a whole -- your colleagues can be a security hole . it's really important to sort of -- every link that looks suspicious, you know, don't just click. make sure you use your common sense .

>> if it says, hey, i want you to link to this website, don't click the link. actually go and type in the website?

>> yes.

>> use http?

>> this is a particularly important thing. an e-mail from your bank or facebook, hey, come log in. don't follow those links. type in the address yourself. also when you're on the open web, if you can -- it's very important to use the this tthttps, which is to make sure your data is encrypted.

>> especially important right now. thank