Are You Following These Easy Digital Security Tips?
Keeping your information secure online has never been more important. In 2016 there were over 1,000 major data breaches that exposed 35 million documents online. Identity theft and fraud complaints have also steadily risen in frequency over the past 3 years.
Although there are many threats to your online security, there are also many ways to protect yourself. Here are 11 easy digital security tips for keeping your personal information secure and protecting against cyber threats.
- Stop trusting email you get that has links. Banking statements, flight reservations, password recovery email, inbox full messages, package tracking notifications, and much more are all used as fake methods of getting users to click on links and take them to fake sites in an attempt to gather secure information. Sadly, the safest bet is to stop trusting links in emails. If you need to check a reservation or status of a package, visit your provider’s site directly.
- Use a password keeping program. LastPass, KeePass, Dashlane, 1Password and Roboform are all good programs. Many offer free versions and some are totally free. Don’t write down passwords. If you use Dropbox, OneDrive, Google Drive or the like, save the password database on your cloud drive and it will be accessible anywhere.
- Vary your passwords! Don’t use the same password for every account. If a company you use gets breached, those stolen credentials won’t work on other sites.
- When you make an online payment, avoid using debit cards or anything directly tied to your bank account. Instead, use a credit card with some type of insurance tied to it or a type of online payment method like PayPal or others that act as a buffer to your bank accounts.
- A lot of websites allow you to save your credit card information in order to make future buying faster and easier. Don’t do it. Breaches happen all the time. There’s nothing to steal if your credit card isn’t saved on the site.
- Keep your software, operating system and browser up to date. Applying updates to your system will prevent malware or hackers from exploiting security weaknesses.
- Avoid “fad sites” that seem popular at the moment. These sites often carry “drive-by download attacks” that can threaten your data. Just because everyone is visiting and sharing a link to a site doesn’t mean it’s safe from digital threats.
- Be careful with how much you share on social media. Criminals and hackers can learn a lot of information about you just by observing your public profile and what you’re sharing.
- Keep active, up-to-date anti-virus software installed on your computer. Good anti-virus software will prevent most kinds of digital security threats before they happen.
- Avoid downloading unnecessary software or browser extensions. If you install software, always choose a custom install, watch carefully, and decline add-ons and extensions that get offered during automatic installations.
- Keeping a little healthy paranoia and skepticism concerning email, social media, and other aspects of your digital life can help you catch things that would otherwise slip by.
With these tips in mind, you can browse, shop and enjoy the web more securely. If you are concerned about your online security, whether personal or business, give us a call! We perform free consultations that will help you know how to improve all aspects of your I.T.
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