60% of people have stated that they know someone or were the victim of an online scam. When you realize you’ve been scammed, there are a series of thoughts that go through your mind.
Instead, of panicking why not do what it takes ahead of time to ensure the internet safety of you and your family. Below we’ve created a guide of internet safety rules that will give you peace of mind every time you enter cyberspace.
Things to Consider
When you decide to go online, there are several things that you need to think about beforehand. The first thing is your privacy; let’s be honest when posting information online; it’s never really private.
This also applies to things being permanent. Although the site might state that something you’ve posted has been deleted, it never really is gone. There are several ways that people can go about finding information that you thought you’d deleted.
Another common risk you take when using the internet is being catfished. While this isn’t always for romantic reasons like the MTV show, there are several instances when hackers pretend to be an organization or person of importance in the hopes of getting your personal information.
Now that you’ve got an idea of some of the things you’re up against, we’re going to offer you some tips to protect your information.
Create a Solid Password
One of the first things you do when creating an online account is deciding what your username and password will be. Most people use a special date or someone’s name for both of these things.
Here are some of the things that you don’t want to do when creating or using a password for your account:
- Using one password for everything
- Sharing your password with people
- Using your birthdate
Take time to create strong passwords that will make it challenging for anyone to obtain your personal information. We recommend using a combination of letters, numbers, upper and lowercase letters.
It’s also useful if you use special characters that people normally wouldn’t consider when creating a password. It’s also useful to use a password management software that alerts you about changing your passwords or when your information is at risk.
Rework Your Security Network
The budget allocated to cybersecurity is more than $14.98 billion, and rightfully so at the rate that hackers infiltrate security networks. If you thought that your passwords were the only thing you had to think about, think again.
When a hacker can hack your network, they’ve got access to things like the security cameras in your home and can still your information if you’re using a public network. Another one of the internet safety facts we want to share with you is that you need to consider using a virtual private network or VPN.
This secure network will only be for you. Its purpose is to create a secure internet connection. This gives you the ability to connect your cellphone or computer no matter where you are.
Don’t Click Unknown Links
Congratulations, you’ve just won a prize. All that you’ve got to do next is click on the link you see below. Before you know it, you’ve clicked the link only to realize that you never entered a competition.
Hackers understand how to play off of emotions, and one of the best feelings is knowing that you’ve won a prize, especially if it’s a monetary prize. To avoid this type of online scam, always check the emails and text messages you receive.
If you don’t recognize the person that it’s been sent from, don’t click the link. Here are some things that will help you identify that the email isn’t from a reliable source:
- Misspelled words
- Poor use of grammar
- Unknown email address
- Urging you to enter personal information
If you click on the link, don’t enter any personal information if you’re asked to. Sometimes clicking on the link is enough to give hackers the access they need to your computer or mobile device.
There are several types of software that you can use to protect your technology devices.
Check the Site
Often when we’re surfing the web or doing some online shopping, we think nothing of putting in our credit card information. While this might not seem like a big deal, it is, especially if the site isn’t secure.
Before entering your information on one of those fake websites, take time to check the URL field of the site and ensure it says ‘HTTPS.’ The reason you want to check for this is that it lets you know the site is secure and challenging for outside forces to hack.
Once you’ve entered your information on secure sites, the data you’ve provided will then be scrambled to ensure that it can’t be intercepted and stolen.
Update Your Software
We’re all guilty of ignoring the email or notification that our devices send us when it’s time for an update. If you don’t update your device when you’re notified, it leaves you susceptible to cybercrime and leaves your personal information unprotected.
If you don’t have time to stay on top of your updates, go to the settings section of your device. Once there, select the automatic update option.
When it’s time for your applications to be updated, they will do so when your computer or phone is plugged in and resting.
The last tip we have to give you is always to stay alert. If you understand what tactics hackers will use to obtain your personal information, you can stay on top of avoiding them.
If you’re unsure of your security, take some time to review them and make adjustments when necessary.
Internet Safety: Surfing the Web the Right Way
Internet safety is an essential part of the time you spend online. We’ve provided several tips to help you enjoy the time you spend online while also protecting your information.
If you want access to more information like you’ve found above, check out some of the other posts we’ve created.