Throw open the windows and let in some fresh air. It’s time for spring cleaning.
And that goes for your digital stuff too.
Whether it’s indeed spring where you are or not, you can give your devices, apps, and online accounts a good decluttering. Now’s the time. Cleaning them up can protect your privacy and your identity, because when there’s less lying about, there’s less for hackers to scoop up and exploit.
The reality is that we accumulate plenty of digital clutter that needs cleaning up from time to time. Think about it:
Bunches of one-off accounts at online stores we won’t frequent again.
Membership in messages board or forums you no longer drop in on.
Plenty of outdated apps and programs that are still sitting on your devices.
Aging files that are no longer relevant, like spreadsheets and records from years ago.
And photos—oh, photos! We have plenty of those, right?
Seven steps for digital spring cleaning
Together, these things take up space on your devices and, in some cases, can open you up to security hazards. Let’s take a look at how you can clean up in a few steps.
1. Review your accounts and delete the ones you don’t use. Look through your bookmarks, your password manager, or the other places where you store your passwords and usernames. Review the sites and services associated with them critically. If you haven’t used an account in some time, log in one last time, remove all personal info, and deactivate it.