Digital Hack minisode 6

Introduction

You have heard the experts take a deep dive on big topics, now access a segment more valuable than Bitcoin. Our panellists offer exclusive digital hacks they use daily to better their life.

Podcast host, Fleur Anderson is joined by Jessica Hunter, First Assistant Director-General of Cyber Security Services in the Australian Cyber Security Centre. 

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Transcript

Speaker 1:                          

Welcome to the Digital Profession Insights Podcast Digital Hack minisodes. You've heard the experts take a deep dive on big topics, but here's your access to the segment more valuable than Bitcoin. We're asking our leading digital experts, what is the digital hack that they use on a daily basis to make their lives better? Let's hear what they have to say.

Fleur Anderson:              

It wouldn't be a Digital Insights episode if we didn't ask our guest, Jessica Hunter, from the Australian Cyber Security Centre for her most valuable digital hack, something that you could use every day at home or at work that improves your life.

Jessica Hunter:                 

Fleur, I have about 100 of these that I wanted to share, but obviously time is precious. And as you've already mentioned, it's important to be very, very focused given the wealth of all the technical advice out there. So I think I have two hacks if I may.

Fleur Anderson:              

Yes.

Jessica Hunter:                 

I'm sure that's stepping out of the bounds here. The first one relates to understanding whether my passwords or passphrases that I'm using and/or my email addresses have already been exposed on the internet. And there are some really funky things that exist in our devices and on websites to help us determine if we are already exposed. And it's a great prompt to understand, oh, I need to change my password or someone out there has my personal details. Makes it very real for you.

Two ways I hack this one. One is a lot of devices now, particularly sort of iPhones or Android devices, if you go into the settings, it'll actually tell you whether that password has been identified in a data breach before. And it will then prompt you to say change that password for this particular website because we've seen it in a data breach. It is already built into the technology of your phone, but a lot of individuals don't know about it and don't go and check on it. I would highly recommend this as a setting in your phone that you put in place and it'd be something that's just built into your normal routine. I have a cup of coffee in the morning. I change the coffee beans in my coffee machine. I'll also just check that I need to change my passphrases or my email addresses. So that's the first part of that hack.

The second part of that hack is there's also website, Have You Been Pwned? That is a great website for you to put in your email address or passphrase to see if that information, which is all community-led also reveals that it's been part of a data breach. The minute you see that come back as yes, it's been part of several data breaches, it's quite confronting for an individual if you've never done this, but I would strongly recommend it. It gives you a level of education and knowledge about your personal credentials and who may have them, and also gives you a very frank reminder to update your passphrases or change some of your email addresses depending on whether they have been released as part of a data breach. So that's my first hack. Think about passphrases and whether there's already been a data breach in relation to your personal PII information. The second hack is I can't remember all my passphrases.

Fleur Anderson:              

That was going to be my next question.

Jessica Hunter:                 

I used to write them in a book. I'm revealing all my secrets now because that's not digital. So it's not on the internet, but I strongly encourage and I personally use a range of password managers. So they are again, built into a lot of our devices. You can download a password manager, you can use the built-in one that sits within. For instance, if you're on an iPhone, a password manager will automatically create a strong password for you and then store that in and then you need to use a biometric. So it's usually your face ID to release that password. That is a great everyday process for individuals rather than having a password which is a word, 1234, and an exclamation mark, which I know is what people default to. So those are my two quick hacks. The first one is find out how vulnerable and exposed you are through the tools that exist, either that website or on your device, and the second is use a password manager. Makes your life much more simple, but makes your data much more secure.

Fleur Anderson:              

Great. Oh, thank you so much. So Have You Been Pwned?

Jessica Hunter:                 

Have You Been Pwned?

Fleur Anderson:              

So P-O-

Jessica Hunter:                 

P-W-N-E-D I think it is.

Fleur Anderson:              

Ah, okay.

Jessica Hunter:                 

And you could just Google that and you'll bring up that website. It's very well-known in the IT industry, but less known for individuals who don't engage on a daily basis with cybersecurity. But it's a beautiful reminder to just understand where you may have had a data breach. And then always check out cyber.gov.au with our step-by-step guides if you are feeling overwhelmed.

Fleur Anderson:              

I've been feeling as the kids say, feeling a bit seen right now.

Jessica Hunter:                 

Oh no.

Fleur Anderson:              

I'm going to have to go and check all my devices.

Jessica Hunter:                 

Check all your devices.

Fleur Anderson:              

Thank you again, Jessica Hunter from the Australian Cyber Security Centre.

Jessica Hunter:                 

Thanks Fleur.

Fleur Anderson:              

Thanks.

Speaker 1:                          

You've been listening to the Digital Profession's Insights Podcast Digital Hack minisodes. Find the Digital Insights Podcast on all major podcast services. Stay up to date by following us on LinkedIn or Facebook. And of course, if you haven't done so yet, join the profession today. You'll get access to exclusive learning opportunities, accreditation of your skills, and the chance to connect with peers across government. Visit digitalprofession.gov.au for more information. See you next time.