PALO ALTO, CA - SEPTEMBER 19: Customers look at the new iPhone 6 at an Apple Store on September 19, 2014 in Palo Alto, California. Hundreds of people lined up to purchase the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus that went on sale today. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

We are increasingly reliant on our technology. Because of that it is more important than ever to ensure we have the safety protocols in place to ensure our devices, data, and privacy are protected.

Protect Your Devices
Protecting your technological devices starts with physical protection. These devices are powerful machines when it comes to processing data, but many of them are relatively fragile. Since so much of our lives are stored on our phones, tablets, and computers it makes sense to wrap them up and keep them safe. This can be done with iPhone 10 cases, tablet sleeves, or padded laptop bags that protect devices against crowded commuter trains and accidental drops.

Another way to protect all devices is to only charge them by connecting them to a surge protector. There are small units that are barely bigger than a regular outlet or there are larger options that can handle numerous devices at once. Many people don’t realize just how much damage a power surge or lighting strike can do until they witness it first-hand. Having these delicate and important devices protected from unregulated power can mean the difference between an inconvenient power outage and devices that have been destroyed.

Protect Your Data
Once you are sure your devices are as safe as possible from a physical mishap, it is time to make sure the data they contain is equally well protected. This will mean something slightly different for each type of device and maybe even for different applications within a single device but the basics can be universally applied.

First, all devices should only be accessible with a unique password. This means coming up with something new for each device so that even if one password is cracked by a hacker the others will still be safe. It is even possible to protect not only the device but various applications within a single device. If you find you have a lot of different passwords there are services which can make it easier to keep track of them all.

Another important process in protecting one’s data is to regularly backup the files on the device. This can be setup to happen automatically to cloud storage for most phones or computers. Those who do not feel this offers the level of security they want can alternatively choose to manually backup their devices on local storage units. Both methods are effective but it is important to note that cloud storage does offer additional protection against loss if there is a security breach, natural disaster, or other accident that only affects the home or office where the devices have been stored. For example, if you have backed up a computer to server that is located in the same building and a fire destroys both the data is lost. If you choose to backup data to a physical device, be sure to store it in an alternative location.

Protect Your Privacy
If you have especially sensitive data, it is beneficial to spend the time and effort investing in encryption. As data security concerns have grown, there have been many new companies entering this field and offering innovative methods of encryption. The level each individual will require greatly depends on their personal security needs, however, even the average technology user can benefit from encrypting their work-related messages and emails.

Another important consideration in protecting your privacy is in the internet service provider you choose. While it is not possible to choose how you access the internet from work, it is possible to choose what service you use at home and with your smartphone. If you aren’t able to find an ISP that is a consumer advocate, you can configure your browser of choice to limit cookies that track usage.

Protecting one’s online privacy is especially important for parents. Children are always more vulnerable than adults and this is especially true in online environments. Be sure to check settings on social media profiles so that children are not inadvertently broadcasting their location to anyone who happens to follow them. This is a good thing for adults to remember as well.

As technology advances, the safety precautions we employ will also need to become more advanced. Don’t assume the techniques you’ve used for the last five years will be sufficient. Make an effort to keep up-to-date on the latest technological security threats in order to discover the most effective solutions.