Safety is vital for the survival of human beings. At this time and age, very many people spend most of their time online as most of our daily activities are slowly shifting in that direction (online).
This has led to valuable information being shared online by most individuals. People who are looking for ways to make money online, social media enthusiasts, job seekers and everyone else online are all faced with the same threat. In this case, it is very important to take caution while undertaking our activities online.
It is a fact that the internet has many uses and advantages, but as well, it makes users vulnerable to identity theft, fraud, and scams. Therefore, it is highly recommended that you take precaution to protect yourself so that you do not become a victim of cybercrime. In this article, we are going to highlight some of the various measures that you can take in order to protect yourself online.
1. Use Strong Passwords:
You should ensure that you use strong passwords that are hard to crack. Avoid using the date of birth or personal names as passwords. Anyone with malicious intent can easily guess your name or date of birth as your password and get into your account. A strong password is one which contains a mixture of capital letters, small letters, numbers, and special characters.
Also, another thing that you should avoid is to write down your password on a piece of paper as it might fall into the wrong hands. Memorize your password to enhance security and also avoid using the same password repeatedly for all your accounts.U
2. Use Anti-Malware software
Anti-virus software is also a nice way of protecting your self online. This software will get rid of any program that gets into your computer with malicious intent. While under the discussion on anti-malware, always ensure that the firewall in your computer is activated as it is the first barrier that offers protection by blocking connection to unknown or dangerous sites.
It is also advisable to install anti-spyware software to protect your privacy from people who might want to infringe into your privacy by spying your online and offline activities in your computer.
3. Mobile Device Security
Mobiles or hand-held devices are advantageous in many ways. However, they carry a substantial percentage of vulnerability that if not addressed can make its users become victims of cyber-crime. Most functionalities on mobile phones are powered by applications that users install. To ensure that you are secure, you should only install apps from sources that you personally trust. Also, avoid giving out personal information to callers who you don’t know. Most of these callers asking for personal information are mostly con-men and women trying to drain money from you.
4. Update Operating System
Operating systems normally undergo frequent updates during their lifetime. These updates are usually meant to address vulnerabilities that would otherwise be capitalized by a hacker. To ensure maximum protection you should always check for your operating system’s new updates and do the necessary. Apart from security, updates also improve the efficiency of operating systems.
5. Regular back-ups
Back-ups are a part of online security. Back-ups ensure that information is always available even when disaster hits and results in loss of data. Availability is one of the essential requirements of network security. Back-up can either be offline or online.
Offline data back-up can be done on hard disks or flash disks or any other storage media that is available. After backing up data in the storage media, you should store the storage device in a separate location away from the original data. On the other hand, back-up can also be done online. Online backups are usually done using cloud technology and the backed-up data can be accessed remotely.
6. Use Encryption
Sensitive files should always be stored in an encoded format that is not readable before decryption. Encryption is a very effective way of keeping information available only to authorized users. Even if an intruder successfully manages to get hold of your files, they will not be able to read the information in the folder unless they know how to decipher the encrypted data.
Encrypting information before you share it in a network will help in improving your online protection. For instance, while browsing the internet, you should be wary of websites that do not have a green padlock that indicates the website is secure. Read more on the topic of SSL here.
7. Protect Your Identity
Identity thefts have become very common over the recent past. In this case, it is very important that you be cautious about sharing your personal information online. Information such as an address, ID number, phone number, and e-mail address should not be handled recklessly online. This personal information should be guarded and handled with care. Also, in an attempt to protect your identity online, avoid signing up on unsecured websites or subscribing to websites or mailing lists that look suspicious. You can as well go a step further and enable privacy settings on your browser while using the internet.
8. Avoid Clicking on Links That you don’t know
Most of the times, malware will always find its way
into your computer through links that you click online. These links act like a portal
to let the malware into your computer. To protect yourself against such harm,
you should always watch out for links that look fishy and avoid them at all
costs. Links that can be harmful to your computer always have a certain characteristic:
First, they will offer you a sweet deal which most of the times will sound too good to be true. For instance, the link would be offering you a method of how to make $1000 in two weeks.
Another characteristic of harmful links is that they are monotonous and keep popping-up frequently.
9. Secure Your Wireless Connection
Home networks are usually vulnerable to intrusion if they are not properly secured. While using your home network, ensure that the security is addressed and always review and modify the network settings. Changing the password often is also a good way of protecting your home network.
Public Wi-Fi, also known as Hot Spots are also vulnerable. Avoid sharing sensitive information across a public network.
10. Call the Right Person for Help
In case you are in need of maintenance or software support, always contact a certified technician to assist you with the problem.
Additionally, if you notice any type of cybercrime, do not hesitate to report to your local police station. In any eventuality, you should not panic but instead relax and take the right step.
By applying these ten measures in you daily online experience, you can be assured of protection. Remember to share this priceless information with your loved ones to help them increase their online security level.