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Cybersafety strategy for user application hardening

9 steps to hardening your apps and operating system

Protecting your operating system from cyber-attacks involves hardening it and testing its security.

As the backbone of a device, the operating system manages apps, hardware and software to ensure the proper functioning of the device.

One way to harden the operating system and its apps is to add layers of security that make it harder for cybercriminals to breach the system. This can be achieved by following these steps:

  1. Installing all software updates: Using outdated software versions can make the system vulnerable to cyber-attacks
  2. Using a standard operating environment: All computers should run on the same software to reduce the setup changes that users can make to their own computers
  3. Controlling the types of apps that are installed and used in the operating system
  4. Reviewing the apps and functions enabled on the system to ensure that they are all necessary and removing any that are no longer used or required
  5. Managing who can make system changes like installing or uninstalling software
  6. Using software firewalls to limit inbound and outbound network connections to approved apps and services
  7. Having anti-virus software in place
  8. Considering the need for software that can prevent particular devices from being connected to workstations and servers
  9. Logging and storing actions or occurrences that can be recognized by the device’s software, such as an app being updated.

By implementing these extra steps, users can harden their operating system and apps, making it more difficult for cybercriminals to exploit vulnerabilities and launch attacks.

Source: ATO

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