Last week there was a Twitter breach hijacking 130 verified accounts, including those of Joe Biden and Kayne West. The perpetrators downloaded personal data from several of the accounts and attempted to sell usernames. While this hack most likely didn’t affect your nonprofit organization, it serves as a reminder of the importance of keeping your online accounts (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Email Marketing) safe. In this post, I’ll outline 3 ways to ensure the safety of your nonprofit accounts.

3 Tips to keep your nonprofit online accounts safeWe’ve all heard the stories of accounts held for ransom by hackers — it’s no secret that passwords have a substantial monetary value. While there might not be a whole lot you can do to prevent a large-scale data breach, there are things you can do to keep your organization’s online accounts safe(r).

1. Create Strong Passwords

Do not use personal information such as your name, family members, or pets. Don’t use numbers like your address, phone, or birthday, either. All of this is publicly available.

Instead of real words try using special characters such as “*” or “!”. And try to combine this with uppercase and lowercase letters. Longer is better, at least 10 characters.

Here’s a suggestion:
Modify easy to remember phrases. For example, think of a line from a song or a quote and then use the first letter from each word, substituting numbers and symbols for letters. Because my daughter loves Frozen let’s use: “Let it go, let it go, Can’t hold it back anymore” could become: “L1Gl!GChib@”

2. Change passwords quarterly.

It’s important to change your passwords frequently. Changing your password regularly reduces your risk of exposure and avoids a number of dangers. Knowing this and understanding that time has a way of getting away from us…

Here’s a suggestion:
Set a monthly or bi-monthly reminder in your google or outlook calendar. That way you will never forget to update a password.

3. Don’t write them down

It’s not advised to write your password in a notebook. It could be stolen or lost. Especially in an office setting. Okay, so now you’re thinking but if I can’t write them down, how will I ever remember them?

Here’s a suggestion:
Consider using a password manager. I use LastPass. Once set up, it will keep track of all your passwords in their encrypted files. And the best part is that when you get to a website with a password field, LastPass will try to automatically fill it for you. And if it can’t, you are able to look it up in your password vault. All you need to commit to memory is one master password (a really good one!) to get into LastPass and the rest is done for you.

So to recap, cybersecurity is important and you need to remember to be diligent in keeping your online accounts safe. Remember to always, always think of strong passwords and consider a password manager like LastPass to make the process of logging into your accounts effortless.

I would love to hear if my suggestions were helpful when considering the safety of your online accounts. And if you have any questions, please just reach out.

I know you can do this!