As the world of technology changes, we are faced with the dilemma if we should upgrade and change our currents systems and current operating systems to the newest releases. For many of us, that question was again just recently posed with the release of Microsoft Windows 10.

To upgrade or not upgrade, this is the technology question. Well if this is a question that you are thinking about or if you have already taken that plunge, you must be aware of some of the security issues that face us with this new Windows release.

By default, Microsoft has given themselves and third party vendors the ability to access your Windows 10 data without your agreement. Windows 10 has a whole list of security issues that need to be turned off if you want your information kept to yourself. Let’s take a look at some of the Windows 10 items that you may want to disable.

Let’s start with Microsoft knowing how you write and talk. That’s right. Windows 10 by default send Microsoft information about how you write. They say this is used so that they can improve typing and writing in the future. But how do we really know that is the only reason why they want this info?

How about allowing applications the ability to use your advertising information for their purposes? Yes this is another setting “Let apps use my advertising ID for experiences across apps”. How about websites knowing your location without your permission so that they can focus local advertising to you? How about third party applications knowing who you call? These are just some of the things that are turned on by default.

So is there a way that we can use Windows 10 and stop all of this from happening? Yes. All you need to do is know is turn these features off as soon as you install Windows 10. To do this, you would just click on your Start button in the lower left hand corner and then choose Settings. Once the Setting Window appears, choose Privacy. Once you are in the Privacy Windows, you will see things on the left hand side like General, Location, Camera, and many other settings.

Start with clicking on General and choosing which option you want to allow or deny. Continue down the entire list on the left hand side until you have changed your Windows 10 Privacy settings. If you are not 100% sure that you want a setting enabled, then turn it off and look the setting up on your favorite internet search engine. Make sure you understand who is getting your information and what they are doing with it.

When looking at the options, be aware of the connectors. In many of the settings, you will see that allowing an app connector will be enabled. So what does an app connector do? Well app connectors allow dis-similar types of applications to work together. The problem with this is that hackers can write programs to the app connector and the app connector will help hackers gather your information. These connectors only job is to help software access these Windows 10 applications. This includes hackers software.

Technology is a great thing and it’s always nice to have the latest and greatest stuff but it is important to understand how that technology is going to work and also how that technology will protect your data.

Consider taking a look at some of our end-user cybersecurity training to empower your use of technology.