In today’s business world, email is a critical communication tool that we all depend on. How sure are you that no one outside of your business is reading your emails, or using your email address to send out spam to the world? Email accounts generally contain very sensitive information, and you want to ensure that you are the only one with access to your account.
There are many techniques you can use to secure and encrypt your email account, but in this article we will tell you about two free methods that you can apply today to increase your email security substantially.
The first method is to use a secure password. This may sound simply and silly, but the vast majority of all web users ignore this principal of web communication. Statistics show that the vast majority of all email users use weak, simplistic passwords such as ‘12345’ or ‘password’. A strong email password will make it much harder to a hacker to guess your password, and very difficult and time consuming for someone to ‘brute-force’. (Brute-forcing a password is done by building a computer program to guess thousands of passwords.)
Looking for help creating a secure password? At Nerds On Site, we have a minimum requirement for our client’s email passwords. We require that your password be at least 8 characters long, and contain at least one uppercase letter, one lowercase letter and one number. This should be treated as a base minimum, and stronger passwords are certainly recommended. The Gibson Research Corporation has a free secure password tool, which you can use here: https://bit.ly/cNpJoJ
The second method you can and should be using is an encrypted connection to your mail server. This really is much easier to do that it sounds. Most mail providers (such as Nerds On Site) will provide encrypted email connections. If you use POP to download your mail, you can switch to an encrypted POP connection, usually called POPS, or SSL secured POP. The same encryption channel is available for IMAP users and for SMTP connections. The majority of all email users use the default un-encrypted email connections, and this allows a hacker to ‘sniff’ your email traffic, and learn your email username and password very easily. Free tools exist on the Internet to enable a hacker to perform these functions.
Most mail providers follow the same procedures for SSL mail connections. At Nerds On Site, you can use the following settings for your mail client:
Incoming (POP) Mail Server: mail.nerdsisp.com (SSL: yes Port: 995)
Incoming (IMAP) Mail Server: mail.nerdsisp.com (SSL: yes Port: 993)
Outgoing (SMTP) Mail Server: mail.nerdsisp.com (SSL: yes Port: 465)
It’s important to note that just implementing one of these changes will not really secure you – you need to implement both changes. If you have an encrypted email connection but a weak password, a hacker can easily guess your password and get around the encryption. If you have a strong password but un-encrypted mail connections, a hacker can very easily sniff your email traffic and learn your email password in a matter of seconds. Our team at Nerds On Site is ready to help you implement both security measures today. Contact us and learn more today!
5 years ago I told nerds that we needed to brace for 6 months of a cyber crime spree and protect clients that choose to be protected. Little did I know that 5 years later, we...