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Archive for the ‘HTTPS’ Category

Heartbleed: What you need to know

April 10th, 2014 No comments

On April 8, 2014, security researchers announced a flaw in the software that is used to protect your information on the web. The vulnerability, known as “Heartbleed,” could potentially allow a cyberattacker to access personal information.

After a thorough investigation, Microsoft determined that Microsoft Account, Microsoft Azure, Office 365, Yammer, and Skype, along with most Microsoft Services, are not impacted by the “Heartbleed” vulnerability. A few services continue to be reviewed and updated with further protections.

We encourage you to be careful what information you provide to websites and help protect the security of your online accounts by using different passwords for different websites, changing your passwords often, and making your passwords as complex as possible.

For more information, see Microsoft Services unaffected by Open SSL “Heartbleed” vulnerability.

Thanks to you the Microsoft #Do1Thing initiative donates $50,000 to TechSoup Global

Together we've raised $50,000

On Safer Internet Day, February 11, 2014, Microsoft launched the interactive Safer Online website. Every time you made your #Do1Thing promise or shared the website with your social circles, Microsoft made a donation to TechSoup Global.

In less than 24 hours, so many of you promised to #Do1Thing to stay safer that Microsoft donated $50,000 to TechSoup Global! But it wasn’t just the promise alone.

“As communities around the world use the Internet to learn and connect, developing responsible online safety habits is something each of us should act on,” says Rebecca Masisak, CEO of TechSoup Global. “We appreciate being a part of Safer Internet Day. And with your contributions, TechSoup Global will further develop and deliver online safety education training materials and guidance to be shared across our global network.”

So far, people from five continents have shared what they are doing to help create a better Internet. What’s the number one global promise so far? Creating strong passwords and regularly changing them. Other popular responses included: two-step authentication for online accounts, sharing minimal personal information, using secured Wi-Fi connections, and shopping on https-enabled websites

Of those who answered our Safer Online polling questions:

  • Nearly half (47 percent) of participants chose learning as the greatest benefit the Internet has brought to their lives, while 17 percent chose exploring, and 10 percent go online for entertainment purposes.
  • Website visitors were also asked which potential online risks concern them the most. Of the nine choices, 28 percent selected financial loss as the most concerning, with 22 percent opting for loss of personal privacy, and 19 percent finding forms of malware on their device the greatest concern.
  • Finally, over two thirds (76 percent) of respondents edit or remove online information that may impact their reputation. Learn how to take charge or your online reputation.

If you haven’t done so yet, share your #Do1Thing story, see what others around the world are promising, and get online safety tips to help you stay safer online, today and every day! 

What is HTTPS?

January 21st, 2014 No comments

HTTP stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol. It’s the language that is used to deliver information over the web, and it’s the first element you see in any URL.

Most web browsers (including Internet Explorer) use an encrypted protocol called Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) to access secure webpages. These pages use the prefix HTTPS. The “s” stands for secure.

If you’re just browsing the web and not entering any sensitive information, HTTP:// is just fine. However, on pages where you enter your password, credit card number, or other financial information, you should always look for the https:// prefix. If you don’t see the “s,” don’t enter any information that you want to keep secure.

For more information, see Privacy in Internet Explorer.

5 reasons NOT to share personal information on a website

August 22nd, 2013 No comments

Knowing when to trust a website depends in part on who publishes it, what information they want, and what you want from the site.

Here are five reasons to think twice before sharing information with a website.

1.       The site asks for personal information on a page whose URL does not start with HTTPS. If the URL in the address bar starts with HTTPS (instead of HTTP), the page is more secure. Never type passwords or other personal information unless you see the HTTPS.

2.       The site isn’t certified by an Internet trust organization. You can increase your privacy and security by shopping only at sites and using only services that have been certified by organizations such as TRUSTe , BBB Online, or the WebTrust website.

3.       You don’t know why they need the personal information. Watch out for sites that ask for credit card numbers or other financial information to verify your identity.

4.       You can’t find a privacy policy or privacy statement. Websites should outline the terms and circumstances regarding if or how they will share your information. If you can’t find this information, consider taking your business elsewhere.

5.       The site looks suspicious. Be wary of deals that sound too good to be true, offers that you receive in email messages from someone you don’t know, and email messages that you suspect might be spam.

 For more information, see: