Hack-Proof Your Life Now! The New Cybersecurity Rules by Sean M. Bailey & Devin Kropp
HACK-PROOF YOUR LIFE NOW! is a well-written, concise manual on basic steps to improve your cybersecurity. The book starts off with a reader survey to see how secure you are. Ooops! I scored a 20 (which is bad, very bad.) Okay, it turns out that there is much that I need to change to make my information more secure. Fortunately, this book offers practical, easy steps that one can take quickly.
Whilst reading through the book, I discovered three types of security tips:
- Tactics I already knew about and pretty much already do. For example, using more secure passwords, having anti-virus software, etc.
- Tactics that I want to investigate further. For example, putting a "credit freeze" at the 3 credit reporting bureaus;
- Tactics that are OBVIOUSLY great ideas that I need to do right away. I found several truly outstanding tactics that I intend to implement very soon (like when I finish typing.)
Each short chapter explains one specific tactic. The authors explain, in simple language, what the problem is, and what you should do about it. For example, Chapter 15 is "How to Guarantee You Never Pay Extortion to Cyber Thieves." Here, the reader learns how ransomware works, and how to protect yourself if you are attacked. (Have your files saved in 3 different methods.)
The last part of the book is a practical "Action Guide." It contains 18 Action Steps that one can do right now. For example, Action Step #13 is "Install Antivirus Software Now." That one was pretty obvious to me, but some of the other steps were not so obvious. For instance, Action Step #7, "Add Passcodes to Your Devices." Ooops! That one is pretty obvious, isn't it? Dumb me. (If you're reading this and you are a hacker, please don't steal my Tablet until I finish writing this review and get a passcode set-up.)
Of all the ideas and tips in this book, there is one that is obviously a great idea and simple to implement--Why didn't I think of it myself? Here it is: Action Step #1: "Create a Secret Email Address." The point is, do NOT use your usual email address for important financial accounts. Get another one that you use just for those accounts. Great idea! This way, if some bad person manages to hack your regular email address, he won't get your financial information. Isn't this an "obvious" tip? Well, I confess I never thought of it before.
Another tip really stood out to me. Chapter 10 explains how to put a "credit freeze" on your credit files. I was only vaguely aware of this tactic. This is a solid idea worth serious investigation.
So all in all, I found HACK-PROOF YOUR LIFE NOW! to be a solid book, full of very good ideas. This is a well-written, easy to follow book. The authors do a good job at explaining, in clear language, how to implement the steps suggested. At the end of the book is a useful Glossary, Resources, as well as Endnotes.
Advance Review Copy courtesy of the publisher.