Today’s rapidly modernizing world is fraught with cybersecurity threats. Though 2021 isn’t over yet, it’ll only take 238 additional breaches for it to tie the record for the year with the most hacks of all time, a grim milestone that was achieved in 2017. Fortunately, tech giants are responding by stepping up their security game. Most recently, Microsoft launched Windows 11 last October 5, and it’s the most secure OS they’ve released to date. If you’re thinking of upgrading to Windows 11, you might be wondering how to make the most out of Windows 11 new security features.
Upgrade your OS Windows 11 to protect your data.
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5 Ways To Make The Most Out Of Windows 11 New Security Features
We have listed some ways in which you can make your OS more secure.
Get A Good Motherboard
The Trusted Platform Module (TPM) is a microcontroller embedded into your motherboard, and it uses cryptographic keys to protect your hardware. In short, it makes it difficult for anyone to access your PC physically, and features like facial or fingerprint recognition need it to run.
So if you can, don’t use tricks to bypass the TPM requirement when installing Windows 11. Instead, consider investing in a good motherboard with high signal integrity. This will prevent signal distortion and keep your TPM running smoothly. If your motherboard isn’t already TPM-equipped, the ASRock B450 Steel Legend is good if you’re on a budget. If you’re looking to future-proof your PC, try the GIGABYTE X570 AORUS Master.
Don’t Settle For Passwords
Once you’re all set with your TPM 2.0, you can take security a step further by not limiting your login credentials to passwords. Make use of Windows Hello, Microsoft’s biometrics-based system, which will make it significantly harder for outsiders to access your device. First introduced in 2015, Hello uses fingerprints, facial recognition, and iris scans to let you log into not just your Windows account but also select core and third-party applications.
With a mix of infrared cameras, 3D-structured light, and anti-spoofing techniques, Hello prevents people from using replicas of your prints or face to log in. You will receive a prompt to select your login preferences upon opening a newly purchased laptop or PC. If you’ve already got one running, though, go to Settings > Accounts > Sign-in options to register your biometrics.
Use Built-in Security Tools
Once the OS installation is complete, and the login credentials set up, activate some key built-in security tools. One of these is sandboxing. It runs applications in separate, closed-off environments that are deleted once the software is closed. This way, apps infected with malware have no chance of infecting other files on your device. Enable this by pressing Win+R, typing “optionalfeatures.exe,” and checking “Windows Sandbox.”
Another feature of interest is tamper protection, it prevents third-party apps from touching your security settings. Search “security” in the start menu, navigate to Windows Security > Virus & threat protection > Virus & threat protection settings, and switch the Tamper Protection toggle on. Finally, install system updates regularly to get the latest security patches. Settings > Windows Update > Advanced Options > Active Hours.
This will ensure updates don’t shut off your computer in the middle of the workday.
Install Third-Party Security Programs
However, these built-in security features aren’t enough to protect against today’s highly-sophisticated cyber threats. You need third-party security programs that extend beyond the “antivirus” label and provide complete Internet protection. That’s because most threats now come from your web browser, with hackers waiting behind legitimate-looking websites and emails to wreak havoc on your data. Fortunately, you have countless private and secure options when it comes to picking browsers and security tools.
The Brave browser is particularly popular for its built-in ad blocker and browser fingerprinting protection, which prevents advertisers and hackers alike from collecting your data. If you’re willing to shell out more, try VPNs like Surfshark, which uses tamper-resistant, RAM-only servers to protect your data. You can also use free programs like Bitdefender Internet Security to tell you whether a site is safe or suspicious.
Encrypt Your Data
One final step you can take to enhance Windows 11’s protection is to encrypt your data. That way, even if a hacker does gain access to a PC, it will be difficult for them to glean any important information. Though Windows 11 has a built-in data encryption feature, not all devices support this action.
To check if your device fits the bill, go to Settings > Privacy & security > Device encryption.
If you see the phrase “meets prerequisites,” then you’ll be able to encrypt your data without issue. Otherwise, you can turn to third-party softwares. Folder Lock allows you to securely back up your files online, while AxCrypt Premium offers an added feature that lets you securely share encrypted files via public-key cryptography.
As we’ve discussed previously, there are numerous other ways you can use Windows to keep your data safe, like by creating strong passwords or educating everyone in your workplace on the OS’ various security features. And with Windows 11 being Microsoft’s most secure OS yet, it’s only best to make the most of Windows 11 new security features.