6 Ways to Protect Yourself Online
Whether you’re looking to find an answer, a person, or a location, the first place most people will look is on the internet. This is a great storehouse of information in an invisible space. But just how “invisible” is it? While there’s no doubt the worldwide web can be helpful, even life-saving, but there are risks associated with online use. Let’s look at ways you can protect yourself while still getting the best of what the internet offers.
1. Create Secure Passwords
There are passwords for every site that you visit, different email accounts, social media accounts, work websites, you name it, and you need a password for it. One of the worst things to do that will set you up for trouble is using the same password and username combination for all sites. Making your password strong and basically unhackable is the most important key to protecting yourself online.
Even with a unique, secure password, when using public Wi-Fi, do not check your bank account or other important information. This is one way a cyber hacker can gather enough information to do some real damage.
2. Don’t Share Personal Information
Oversharing your personal information is a big no-no when online or even in your life in general. Personal information can include names, birth dates, addresses, phone numbers, locations, social security numbers, and any other identifying factor that can be linked to you. Even one of these pieces of information can be enough for someone to open an account under your name or basically take over your online presence without you even knowing until it is too late.
3. Use the 2-step Authentication Process
This 2-step authentication process can be added even if an account is already in existence. Look for the settings option, and then it could be under passwords or security or something similar. If you can’t find it, contact the site or company and ask them how to do it. Be sure to change this setting to ensure you have this added layer of protection from online hackers.
4. Use a Good Antivirus Software
Install an antivirus software program on all devices you will be using online. There are several different options and companies to choose from. Yes, they cost a little bit of money, but it will be worth it for the peace of mind knowing your activity online will be safe from hackers. Be sure to look for one that regularly updates its protection to stay updated with the latest threats.
5. Watch Your Connections
Be cautious of where you are logging in from. Public Wi-Fi, business accounts, and wireless accounts can all be access points to capture your information. Ensure that when searching online, it is a secure connection.
6. Do Not Click on Pop-Ups:
The latest news or gossip on a celebrity looks enticing, and hackers know this. They can attach viruses or malware to these pop-ups, and when the window is clicked on, it can attack your device. There are even some that contain ransomware, which is when victims have to pay a fee to have it removed from the device.
As long as we are online users, there will be the threat of information getting into the wrong hands. Hopefully, these simple steps will help to keep you in the safe zone and protected while surfing the web.