When it comes to surfing the internet we all want to be as safe as can be. There are lots of places out there filled with cybercriminals looking to collect your information to use against you or gain money from your accounts. Safe online payments are essential when using the internet, and here are some key tips to help you surf the web with the most security available.
Be Careful with Your Downloads
One of the main objectives of cybercriminals is getting you to download malware. Malware is a program or app that carries software that steals sensitive information. Malware can be disguised in many different ways. From popular games to weather checkers, to everything else in between. If apps look suspicious it is probably for good reason, so try to avoid them as best you can.
Be Careful if you Meet people Online
People you meet online are not always who they claim to be. They may not even be real people. Fake social media profiles are one of the most popular ways catfishers hack unwary internet users. As you would in your personal life, but just as safe and secure with who you let enter your online social life.
Keep your Privacy Settings Active
Marketers are always looking to find information about you from cookies and other places on the web, and so do hackers. Your social media usage and browsing preferences will tell hackers a lot about you if you don’t take full charge of your information. Web browsers and mobile networks have privacy protection readily available for users. Websites such as Facebook include privacy-enhancing settings but aren’t enabled as a standard so they need to be activated by users. Settings like these are deliberately hard to find as a lot of larger companies want the information to create revenue from sponsored ads. Stay safe and take the time to search for these extra settings.
Use a Secure VPN
If you’re using the internet in a public setting you do not get the same direct control as you would from your connection at home. Endpoints are the worry for most cybersecurity experts as they differ between private and public connections. Using something like a VPN is a great way to keep all of your information protected when out in the world using a local network.
Be Careful with what you Post
It is important to know that the internet does not feature a delete setting. You may think you have removed something but there are people out there who can probably find it. Any comments on Instagram or Twitter will remain there forever as other users may have captured a screenshot and posted it as an entirely new thread. If you wouldn’t say something in front of your family or employer it is definitely a good idea to keep it away from the internet as it could come back to haunt you in years to come.
Use Strong Passwords
Passwords are one of the biggest weak spots when it comes to internet security. The main issue with passwords is that the majority of people have one password for all of their accounts. Some alterations are made from time to time with an added ‘123’ on the end of a word but for the most part, we see the same passwords spread across all sensitive areas of the internet. Having one password for all avenues makes life a lot easier for cybercriminals. If the password is deciphered then they have unlimited access to your bank, social media, PayPal, bills, subscriptions, and much more. A strong password should be used for each place that requires one. Choose something around 15 characters long with a mixture of letters and numbers, along with special characters too.
Limit Personal Information
Personal information should be limited on the internet. Potential employees or employers do need to know everything about you. Keep things as professional as possible with things like your working background and a form of contact. You wouldn’t hold your personal information for everyone to see out in the street so why would you do it on the internet where millions of people can access it.
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