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Jan. 25, 2019
For Release: Immediately
Central Hudson to Customers: Protect Your Data

Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corp. is once again serving as a Champion of Data Privacy Day, an annual recognition of the importance of protecting personal information. First recognized on Jan. 28, 1981, this important international initiative is held every year on Jan. 28; and as a registered Champion, Central Hudson is demonstrating support for the privacy initiative and critical awareness of safeguarding data.

"At Central Hudson, securing and protecting our customer's information is a top priority,” said Charles A. Freni, President and C.E.O. of Central Hudson. “We work with industry and cyber security experts, use various cyber security measures and train our employees to ensure data privacy. As a Champion of Data Privacy Day, we urge our customers to protect their data and the information they may be entrusted with by learning ways in which to be cyber-safe.”

Stop. Think. Connect., a global online safety education and awareness campaign, suggests following these cyber and online safety measures:

  • Keep security software current: Having the latest security software, web browser and operating system is the best defense against viruses, malware and other online threats.
  • Automate software updates: Many software programs will automatically connect and update to defend against known risks. Turn on automatic updates if that’s an available option.
  • Protect all devices that connect to the Internet: Along with computers, smartphones, gaming systems and other web-enabled devices also need protection from viruses and malware.
  • Plug and scan: USBs and other external devices can be infected by viruses and malware. Use your security software to scan them.
  • Remember: unique account, unique password: Having separate passwords for every account helps to thwart cybercriminals. At a minimum, separate your work and personal accounts and make sure that your critical accounts have the strongest passwords. 
  • Lock down your login: Fortify your online accounts by enabling the strongest authentication tools available, such as biometrics, security keys or a unique one-time code through an app on your mobile device. Your usernames and passwords are not enough to protect key accounts like email, banking and social media.
  • When in doubt, throw it out: Links in emails, social media posts and online advertising are often how cybercriminals try to steal your personal information. Even if you know the source, if something looks suspicious, delete it.
  • Get savvy about Wi-Fi hotspots: Limit the type of business you conduct and adjust the security settings on your device to limit who can access your machine.
  • Protect your $$: When banking and shopping, check to be sure the site is security enabled. Look for web addresses with “https://” or “shttp://,” which means the site takes extra measures to help secure your information. “Http://” is not secure.
  • Practice Good Habits: What you do online has the potential to affect everyone – at home, at work and around the world. Practicing good online habits benefits the global digital community.
  • Help the authorities fight cybercrime: Report stolen finances or identities and other cybercrime to the Internet Crime Complaint Center (www.ic3.gov) and to your local law enforcement or state attorney general as appropriate.
  • Value and protect personal information: Information about you, such as your purchase history or location, has value – just like money. Be thoughtful about who gets that information and how it’s collected through apps and websites. 
  • Be aware of what’s being shared: Set the privacy and security settings on web services and devices to your comfort level for information sharing. It’s OK to limit how and with whom you share information.

“Everyone has a role in protecting personal data, including businesses that maintain information about their customers and individuals posting to social media sites,” said Freni. "It’s important to both protect information from intruders and be selective with information shared online with others.”

Data Privacy Day is led by the National Cyber Security Alliance, a nonprofit, public-private partnership dedicated to promoting a safer, more secure and more trusted internet. For additional ideas on how to protect data and personal information, visit https://stopthinkconnect.org; and to learn how Central Hudson protects customers’ data, visit www.CentralHudson.com/privacy.

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