We live in a digital age. We have more devices than ever before, and we are using them to do everything from taking photos to paying for our groceries. It is estimated that 6 billion people use the internet every day. It means 6 billion people are at risk of cyber security breaches. In this post Afrohi Storama gives the essentials to protect your digital privacy.
You can take 6 steps to protect your privacy online; here they are:
- Use strong passwords that contain both letters and numbers
- Change your passwords often (once per month is recommended)
- Avoid installing apps on public computers or logging into public Wi-Fi networks with sensitive information
- Do not click on links or open attachments in emails if you did not expect them
- Turn on your computer’s firewall
- Install anti-virus software on all of your devices.
- Set up two factor authentication whenever possible
- Be careful with cloud storage software like Dropbox or Google Drive
- Only download apps from the official Google Play store, Apple Store etc.
- Keep your software up to date by downloading updates automatically when available
- Use a VPN service on all of your devices to encrypt data and hide browsing activity
- Don’t click on unknown links or open suspicious emails lightly.
Use strong passwords that contain both letters and numbers :
A password with a capital letter, lowercase letter, numeral and symbol will be very difficult for anyone else to guess. This reduces the likelihood that your account could become compromised by cyber thugs.
Take advantage of two factor authentication:
You can require this when you sign in on new devices using Google Authenticator or another mobile app like Authy ( Download here ). When prompted to input an access code it is sent directly from your phone. It means you will need more than just your username and password to access your account.
Make sure you have an antivirus program:
You should always be on the lookout for viruses, ransomware, malware and other types of scams that may impact you or your computer. Anti virus software is free so download it right away if you do not already have one! There are many options available like Avast ( Download here ).
Create strong passwords :
When setting up accounts with different websites use numbers, symbols and capital letters in unique combinations together as a way to make them much harder for criminals to guess. We recommend using a password manager such as Lastpass ( Visit their website here ). It allows users to have very secure yet easy to remember passwords.
Use a VPN :
When you use public wifi your information can be at risk, by using a VPN (like ExpressVPN) it adds another layer of security to keep your data safe and encrypted! Make sure to not click on links or open messages from people that are unknown or do not look trustworthy when connected through an unsecure network.
Get the Right Digital Security Software:
There are many options available for things like spyware protection, ransomware protection, even parental control software which may come in handy if there are young children in the house who have access to technology too. We recommend services such as Malwarebytes and Kaspersky Anti-Virus .
Be Aware of Phishing Emails:
A phishing email will appear legitimate and not spammy at all. But once you click on a link or download an attachment it gives the hacker access to your personal information. Also do not send private information such as passwords and usernames through email either!
Don’t Get Hacked:
The number one form of hacking is keylogging which can happen if you use public Wi-Fi hotspots without using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) . If someone has hacked into your computer they could be recording everything that happens including bank transactions and online shopping activity. It’s important to have strong security software installed that will protect against this kind of attack from happening in the future too. We recommend services like Malwarebytes for this purpose.
Stay Safe Online:
Hacking isn’t the only risk to your online security, there are many other ways you could lose control of them. Your social network accounts can be hacked by someone if they guess your password. That is why it’s important to use a strong combination of letters and numbers for this purpose. Try using 6 random words instead! Also don’t forget that apps like Facebook Messenger have access to all kinds of information on your device including pictures and videos. So make sure these are protected too with encryption before uploading anything sensitive.