3 New Year's Tech Resolutions You Should Keep

Stephanie Humphrey
Polka Dot/Thinkstock

(The Root) — It's a new year, and along with losing weight or saving money, technology should also be on your list of resolutions. There are some very simple things you can do this week to make sure you start 2013 off with good tech practices that will serve you well throughout the year.

Change your passwords: If you haven't done it in the past three to six months, it's time to change all of those passwords you use online. I know it's a huge pain in the you-know-what, but it is critical to the security of your personal information. To help you keep track of all those passwords, consider using a password manager or storing them in a password vault.


Back up your data: If you've ever seen a frantic Facebook status from a friend saying that their phone was lost/stolen/broken and they've lost all of their contacts, then you should know how important it is to back up your data. Whether they're on your smartphone or computer, making sure your music, photos and contacts are protected can spare you the agony of years of lost information. If you have an Apple device, make sure iCloud Backup is turned on. But anyone can invest in an external hard drive for their computer, or research online backup services to protect valuable data.

Check your privacy settings: With social media sites changing their privacy policies almost daily, it's always a good idea to regularly check your settings to make sure that you're sharing information only with those you have designated. Even if you've done this in the past, policy changes could invalidate your previous choices. Instagram came under fire recently for a privacy policy that could allow your photos to be sold (they've since claimed to have retracted some of the language in the policy), so you also want to make sure you're reading those lengthy terms-of-service documents before you click "Join" as well.

As you take stock of new changes and lofty goals you'd like to tackle this year, don't forget about little things you can do as well. A few simple tech resolutions can prevent a lot of headaches later and are much easier to keep than going to the gym!

Follow tech-life expert Stephanie Humphrey on Twitter.

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