By Victoria Robertson, Uloop
As a parent, back to school can be a stressful time, as keeping your child safe falls just a little more outside of your control. While their safety on campus isn’t necessarily something you can help, their cybersecurity can be. This year, as school is back in session, so is Cybersecurity 101.
Cyberattacks are on the rise. As we take a look at recent website and celebrity profile hackings, the seriousness of these attacks ranges, but it is all a violation of privacy that can leave you and your students feeling helpless.
In fact, students and educational institutions are very vulnerable to cyberattacks, and protecting your student’s passwords is truly the first line of defense. Students exhibit “risky behaviors” on the internet, including oversharing on social media, utilizing the same passwords for multiple sites, and/or sharing passwords with friends.
In a survey performed by Dashlane, a leading password manager, students from leading American universities were questioned about their online habits. According to the survey results, just a little less than half of the students contacted were aware they have been hacked/compromised at some point already.
Most of these students also revealed they have more than three devices, which means that it’s easier for hackers to access all of their devices, rather than just the one.
A separate poll found that 64 percent of millennials admitted to sharing/receiving passwords from friends/family/etc. This means that this population is more likely to share personal password information with others, which increases their risks of cyberattacks.
That being said, only 35 percent of students said they save passwords to their browsers most of the time (an action that is highly recommended against) and about 75 percent of students said they go beyond the traditional password character requirements.
Based on this research, Dashlane revealed that the average American has over 150 accounts. Each of these accounts requires a unique and strong password, but, as students reuse passwords, 73 percent of students revealed they do not actually utilize unique passwords for every account.
Emmanuel Schalit, CEO of Dashlane, said the following:
“Our hope is that everyone uses a password manager, especially students at this time of year as they settle into school physically and digitally since young people as a demographic have more online accounts to keep track of than ever before. We hope that this promotion not only teaches students how they can safely manage their online lives but also help them save money to spend on necessities, like ramen and books.”
So in terms of the advice that you can provide to your college-aged students, let them know that they should be cautious when using public Wi-Fi networks and devices. So, when doing homework in the library or coffee shop, or using their laptops in class, students should not be logging any sensitive information.
Also, let them know to keep an eye out for “phishy” activity. Don’t download attachments or open emails from unknown sources. Always verify information prior to opening anything sent to you by an unknown source.
They also shouldn’t be oversharing on social media. Don’t post anything identifiable, such as address, work information or other account verification question information. Also, don’t let social media know when you will be out of town — feel free to post about it, but wait until you’re back from the trip and home safe.
Online account protection is huge, and students shouldn’t be reusing passwords, as it’s the leading cause of account takeovers. Each password utilized needs to be unique.
For more information to share with your student, visit Dashlane.com/students.
It’s more important than ever for students to be safe on the internet. Dashlane is the leading password manager (in other words, it stores all your passwords for you in one, secure location). And this year, Dashlane is educating college-aged students in regards to their digital identities, including how they can protect them.
Dashlane has helped over 7.5 million consumers in over 150 countries and is trusted by over 6,000 companies. Their app is available on PC, Mac, Android, and iOS and has won critical acclaim from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and USA Today, amongst others.
And, for worried parents, Dashlane has just announced a free, one-year subscription to their award-winning Premium service to college students and professors. In order to qualify for this service, all you need is a valid .edu email address.
In order to sign up for this amazing, protective service, current and incoming college students should visit Dashlane.com/students to sign up. This service will ensure that students are protected online, including all of their password, credit card, and other identifying information. This service is not only beneficial when on campus, but off campus as well.
So sign up for the free service, have your students download the app, and feel a little bit safer knowing their online identities are being taken care of.
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