The internet carries a wide range of possibilities. In fact, about 5 percent of people have their entire careers based online, working from home.
However, the internet is not all nice weather and roses. Many dangers exist online, and the more time you spend on the computer, the more at risk you are. If you follow the internet safety tips below, you can save yourself from headaches and frustration in the future.
The Best Internet Safety Tips: Use Strong Passwords
The best passwords are not long random strings of letters and numbers, but rather phrases. This is because they are easily remembered. A password such as “she sells seashells down by the seashore” is long and not cracked quickly by a computer program.
Use Many Passwords
Beyond using a long, but easy to remember, password, you should have a few that you switch out. Having a rotation of four or five passwords used across different accounts helps protect against hacking – or like 20 percent of all Americans, use a unique password for each account. This is because if someone gains access to your email account with one password, they won’t have instant access to other accounts using that same password.
Use Antivirus Software…
The first tip is to have antivirus software installed on your computer. These programs will catch and delete viruses and programs that can harm your computer or steal personal information.
…And Update It Too
The second tip is to keep that software updated. New updates have new definitions of viruses and can look for new programs, keeping your computer safe from the newest threats.
Limit Personal Information
When filling out information on websites and for your emails. make sure that you limit how much you share with others. Simple things, like your name, are likely fine, but your marital status, home address and home phone number are less likely to be relevant. Keep relationships professionals, and treat people who push for additional information about yourself at a distance.
Use Several Email Addresses
You should also split apart your work and personal selves across at least two email addresses. This protects you from spam and fishing attempts, especially if you only connect your personal and professional information to a single one.
Don’t Click Ads and Email Links
As a general rule of thumb, you should avoid clicking on random ads and pop-ups. This includes clicking on links within emails unless you were expecting them.
Warnings from your bank or other large social media sites may be fishing attempts to get your password. Instead, go to the official site and log in to see if there are any alerts.
You should also always be careful when downloading files from the internet, or from emails. Never open attachments from people that you don’t know.
If you have antivirus software, you should always scan new downloads before you open them to catch viruses before they can damage your computer.
Don’t Connect to Public Wifi
You should avoid using your laptop with public wifi networks. While free wifi services at coffee shops are likely secure, you should stay away from other free networks that you don’t recognize.
Connecting to these networks can allow people to access your files and other information on your computer, even stealing your passwords to certain accounts.
Now that we’ve covered a few of the internet safety tips, reach out to us for help in securing your personal information.