As technology enhances, people do more of their activities online. Of course, there are many advantages to this, but also a few risks. The aim of this article is to explore the subject of cybersecurity and consider some of the techniques that should be used to remain safe online.
1. Be Wary of Irresistible Offers That Are Too Good To Be True.
You may see lots of cool advertising offers like 1/2 price on hosting from GoDaddy that are totally safe and legit. But there may be offers like Bill Gates giving everyone $10,000 ‘if they click this link’ that are not. Usually these scams involve getting you to visit a website that has some sort of spyware that it will try to infect your home computer with.
Web browsers have gotten much better about screening out the spyware that these sites tend to use, but you still need to be vigilant about what websites you visit.
2. Be Careful With Personal Information.
In an ideal world, users would share very little personal information. It’s certainly true to say that the more information there is, the bigger the risk may be. Of course, you may need to provide some personal details when signing up to various websites. However, consider what you can do to protect your privacy as much as possible.
For example, you should be cautious of revealing your full name, age or address when it’s not necessary. Keep as many details private unless required to provide them or you feel comfortable to do so, many sites also allow you to have a private profile if you are particularly concerned. Also, be careful with what you post publicly that may reveal personal information.
Finally, you can protect financial information by using a prepaid card or a service such as PayPal. By doing this, you also maintain more control against auto-billing in the future, which is especially relevant for subscription services.
3. Use Strong Passwords and Additional Security.
When it comes to cybersecurity, a strong password is your best defence against criminals stealing your information. However, a lot of people fail to follow this advice and ensure their account is vulnerable to being hacked. Therefore, remember to choose passwords that use a combination of letters, numbers and symbols.
Also, try not to use the same password on multiple sites and quickly change your password if you get caught up in any data breaches. A secure password though doesn’t have to be the end of your security. Secondary security is also an option, so you have to confirm logins using your mobile phone for example. Of course, this should mean that a hacker can’t access your account only by guessing your password.
4. Consider Investing in a VPN.
Protecting your privacy is a complicated job, especially with the amount of personal data that is now out there. Being careful with what you share and using strong passwords will only get you so far. Millions of websites still potentially have access to your data including your specific location through your IP address.
The only way to fully protect yourself is through a VPN. A VPN will mask your real IP address, meaning you aren’t as vulnerable. It will also make it much harder for sites to track you, and while this might be annoying for website owners, it means you are no longer an easy target for hackers. Do keep in mind though that the GPS on your mobile phone will expose your exact location if it’s turned on, so you want to turn that off as well when you don’t want to be tracked.
We have several head-to-head comparisons of VPN providers on our site. You can also check out big sites like PCmag.com and Techradar.com that have measured stats and recommendations on which VPN is the safest and/or budget-friendliest.
As more data is shared online, cybersecurity takes on more importance. The preceding article has looked at some of the ways you can best protect yourself. It’s crucial you take internet security seriously and don’t open yourself up to unnecessary risks. Therefore, remember to be careful with the personal information you share, use strong passwords and additional security and use a VPN for complete protection.