How cyber-savvy are you?
Test your knowledge about the cyber security risks you face every day. Take the 11-question quiz to find out how cyber-savvy you are!
Whether on a desktop, laptop or mobile device, your password is often your greatest point of vulnerability. Is your password on the list of the Top 500 Worst Passwords of All Time? If so, change it now!
Here are two tools from Microsoft that can help in formulating a better password:
October 19-25 is National Teen Driver Safety Week. Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among 15- to 20-year olds. Teenagers are four times more likely to be involved in a fatal car crash than adults. As many of these 30% of these accidents involve alcohol. Distracted driving is also a key issue. The most dangerous time of a teen driver’s life is the first 12 months of holding an independent license.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) offers a Driver Education Toolkit with a variety of fact sheets on topics that are valuable to novice and experienced drivers alike:
It’s that time of year again – flus, colds, and allergies are kicking in. Flu season runs from October through May, generally peaking in February. When you get sniffles and aches, it’s hard to differentiate because these maladies have similar symptoms — but the treatment can be very different. The National Institute of Health offers a handy chart comparing symptoms, treatment and prevention: Cold, Flu, or Allergy? Know the Difference for Best Treatment
The flu can be serious for some groups: seniors (65+), children (especially those younger than 2), and people with chronic health conditions. Your best defense is a flu vaccine. The CDC suggests that everyone 6 months of age and older should get the flu vaccine.
Use the Flu Vaccine Finder to find a location near you.
In addition to the flu, parents are quite concerned about virus affecting kids – while it is not a new virus, it seems to be popping up and causing concern. The CDC offers more resources to learn about Enterovirus D68, as well as some prevention tips.
Here are some video clips of great money-saving hacks for household products you probably already have in one of your your cabinets. Learn some of their less-well known uses and save on expensive alternatives.
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a chance to raise awareness about the importance of early detection of breast cancer. 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. When breast cancer is detected early (localized stage), the 5-year survival rate is 98%. Make a difference! Spread the word about mammograms and encourage communities, organizations, families, and individuals to get involved.
How did your day start today? You probably wouldn’t be thrilled to wake up and find a camera filming you but that’s exactly what happened to an owl family recently — they woke up one morning to find a GoPro camera trained on their burrow. The curious birds spent some time investigating this intruder, which gave us the opportunity for a great up-close-and-personal look at some baby owls. (The baby owls make their appearance about a minute or so in.) Too cute!
And if you enjoyed that, you may also enjoy seeing Kuu the Screech Owl having a bath and being dried.
When there’s snow or ice on the road, drivers are cautious, but rain is such a frequent occurrence that drivers are sometimes over-confident. That’s a mistake that could be costly or even deadly. According to the Federal Highway Administration:
“Most weather-related crashes occur on wet pavement and during rainfall. Each year, 75 percent of weather-related vehicle crashes occur on wet pavement and 47 percent happen during rainfall. Nearly 5,700 people are killed and more than 544,700 people are injured in crashes on wet pavement annually. Every year, over 3,400 people are killed and over 357,300 people are injured in crashes during rainfall.”
Edmunds offers a good refresher on best practice Tips and Techniques for Driving in Rain. But one condition that you should know about and prevent is hydroplaning or aquaplaning. According to SafeMotorist.com:
The term hydroplaning is commonly used to refer to the skidding or sliding of a cars tires across a wet surface. Hydroplaning occurs when a tire encounters more water than it can scatter. Water pressure in the front of the wheel pushes water under the tire, and the tire is then separated from the road surface by a thin film of water and loses traction. The result is loss of steering, braking and power control.
Rubber tires have tread (grooves) that are designed to channel water from beneath the tire. This creates higher friction with the road surface and can help prevent or minimize instances of hydroplaning.
The upcoming weekend forecast is for warm and glorious weather here in New England, a perfect time for getting out to enjoy the foliage. There’s leaf peeping, apple picking, corn mazes, pumpkin festivals, country fairs and more – we’ve gathered some resources to help you make the most of the nice weather.
If you want current tracking of the weather in this or any other season, Twitter can be a very fun way to do that. Meteorologists have a strong and active presence — many issue updated foliage reports and photos along with the weather. We have a list of New England Weather Resources on Twitter that you can follow.
If you’re heading out for drives, we issue our seasonal caution to be alert for deer and moose. The Insurance Information Institute reminds us that fall is peak season for deer and auto collisions. “Deer migration and mating season generally runs from October through December, and causes a dramatic spike in the movement of deer population. As a result, more deer-vehicle collisions occur in this period than at any other time of year.” Plus, in northern New England, you need to be on the lookout for moose.
Here’s a sad story we’ve heard all too often: a renter has a fire and loses everything because they don’t have rental insurance. We aren’t the only ones who hear this story – the Red Cross says they run into this scenario more and more often. In fact, a recent poll by the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) reveals that only 37 percent of renters have renters insurance, versus 95 percent of homeowners who have a homeowners insurance policy.
We hear all kinds of excuses:
Myth: My landlord’s insurance will cover loss. Reality: the landlord’s insurance covers their building, not your property
Myth: It’s too costly. Reality: It is cheaper than you might think – especially considering the alternative. According to I.I.I, “…the average cost of a renter’s policy is only $187 per year, or less than four dollars per week.”
Myth: My possessions aren’t valuable enough to cover. Reality: It’s very costly to replace everything. Even for students in furnished apartments, the cost of replacing clothes, books, laptops, and other personal possessions can add up. Plus, renters insurance covers many things people often don’t expect. It would help protect you if a guest were injured in your home or if a laptop were stolen from your car. It would also help to pay for temporary living expenses if your apartment is destroyed.
In honor of international Talk Like a Pirate Day which is celebrated on September 19 every year, we’re offering some lessons in pirate speak in the video below or you can check out the pirate glossary. Buccaneers and landlubbers alike should keep an eye out for pirate booty offers on your social media timelines. We heard that visiting a local Krispy Kreme today and ordering in pirate speak will get you a free donut; visiting in full pirate regalia will get you a dozen free donuts. If you need help looking the part, try pirate fashions.
Internet pirates are fun, but the real thing is another story indeed. If you are in a global shipping or maritime industry, you may need insurance coverage against piracy. If your travel needs are more pedestrian, trip insurance might be just the thing – take the travel insurance quiz. For questions about piracy coverage or any other form of risk management, find a local independent insurance agent near you.