How to keep your notes secure in the digital age?

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Keeping personal notes and sensitive information secure has become increasingly challenging in the digital age. With cybercrimes on the rise, hackers are looking for weaknesses to exploit and gain access to private data.

Use encrypted app and service

Encrypting your files and notes essentially scrambles the data so only someone with the right encryption key unscramble and read it. Many end-to-end encrypted note-taking and file-storage services can be used. The services encrypt everything on their servers and your notes remain secure even if their servers are hacked. You also use encrypted messaging apps like Signal and Wire to store your notes. The encryption protocols these services use make it extremely difficult for anyone else besides you to read your data. Enable auto-lock and authentication requirements like passwords or two-factor authentication to add additional security layers.

Store notes offline

What is a safenote? The most secure place to store sensitive information is offline on external storage devices not connected to the internet. Services like Veracrypt allow you to encrypt external hard drives or USB sticks. You store your notes and files encrypted on these external devices. With no connectivity, hackers can’t access these offline encrypted devices remotely.

Keep your devices and apps updated

While strong encryption protects your notes’ contents, you also need to prevent your devices from being compromised. Keep the operating systems and security software on your devices updated with the latest patches. Update apps frequently as developers constantly fix security flaws with new versions. Outdated devices and software are more vulnerable to cyber-attacks. Develop a routine to check and install updates so your data has fewer entry points for hackers. Avoid accessing or editing sensitive notes on public WIFI networks in coffee shops, hotels, airports, etc. These networks are easier for hackers to breach allowing them to spy on traffic and infiltrate your device. Either refrain from accessing personal notes on public networks or use a VPN (Virtual Private Network) to encrypt all of your device’s internet traffic which keeps snoopers out.

Use antivirus and firewall software

Install reputable antivirus software like BitDefender or Kaspersky to scan for and block malware attacks. Malware is software cyber criminals use to infect devices and gain backdoor access. Firewalls monitor network traffic and block unauthorized access attempts. Utilize both firewalls and updated antivirus tools to establish all-around protection.

Manage your passwords properly 

Having strong, unique passwords safeguarded properly is the first line of defense for your digital assets. Use passwords with maximum allowed length and complexity requirements. Unique 12-15 character passwords using upper/lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols are ideal. Avoid repeating or tweaking the same password across different accounts. Use a dedicated password manager like 1Password or LastPass to store passwords securely encrypted. These tools also help you manage and even generate complex unique passwords for each service and website. Enable two-factor authentication with passwords whenever possible for services that house sensitive documents.

Back-up your data regularly

While the above tips help protect your data, you should still regularly back up notes and files in case something happens to your device or they somehow get compromised. Cloud backup services like iDrive encrypt and then continuously backup your data on external servers managed by security experts. You also back up data to encrypted external drives kept safely offline. Backups ensure you restore your notes if needed.

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