Cybersecurity: Tips on how to maintain your security online!

We cannot deny that even though the internet is the new home of knowledge and opportunities. Some shady parts of it make us worry about our Cybersecurity. There are a lot of advantages as well as disadvantages in the approaching Age of Technology. Keeping up with the current trends and sharing your progress physically, mentally and financially online is not such a bad thing. We should always look out for possible phishing and misleading information that may put your personal information at risk.

Click-bait is the most renowned way to get you on their website and extract information from you. They seem to look like a legit website or look like it is the original website, and it will prompt you with an alert to enter your personal information to prevent something from happening.

Here are easy steps to keep your safety online:

Don't share Personal Information.

Be attentive to your sensitive information like your password, bank information, home address, phone number and the likes. Never disclose this information to anyone unless they are Authorized Personnel from a bank or law enforcement.

Even when browsing online, make sure that you are on a secure website when you enter your info, such as credit card information and SS ID. That is one of the ways on how hackers phish information from users. When you are in doubt, it is best to leave the website.

Check if you are browsing a legitimate link.

We always tend to check our emails when we start our day as a part of our daily routine. Be on the lookout for suspicious emails with attachments or links that require you to click or download. Make sure that you are familiar with the legit links and you are receiving an email from a known person or email address if it has an attachment.

"Think before you click." That's what they always say on the internet and across all Social Media. One way to check if a website is legit is to hover your mouse over on the link. It should show you a preview of the website. You may try to Google Search first the company name that shows if you're not sure a link is safe. If it is authentic and finds a link to the official website that matches what you have on the email, then you may proceed with it.

Another way to make sure that you are on the right website is to check for a padlock icon on the address bar before the website address. It indicates that the browser you are using has verified if the website is secured and would prompt if you would need to close it.

Make sure to use a VPN connection for your online transactions.

Photo by Petter Lagson on Unsplash

When you are in a coffee shop, enjoying a cup of coffee while working, we tend to connect to their public wifi connection. Anyone from a Public Network who can connect to your laptop or device may put your personal information at risk. With a VPN present, you can ensure the safety of your identity and all of your online transactions.

VPN or Virtual Private Network connects your device securely to an internet server where no one can track your activity or acquire any information from your device through your internet connection. The only disadvantage of connecting through a VPN is that you'll have a slower internet connection because VPN directs your connectivity through another secured server to ensure the safety of your data.

Browse through websites that Web Address starts with https://

There are a lot of Sales happening right now because it is the Mid-Year already! Online shopping is the new normal in this pandemic and much safer than going to the physical store. When browsing through online stores, make sure that you are on a website that the web address starts with https://.

The "s" on it stands for "secure", so you can freely sign up, enter your personal and payment information. Web browsers such as Google Chrome and Brave prompts you when a website is not secured or safe to go.

Choose an anti-virus and anti-malware software to use.

Having Anti-Virus or Anti-Malware software on your device is necessary! If we don't have one, we won't know if something is already invading our personal information on our devices. Sometimes, we tend to fall for a click-bait or download files unprotected. With this present on your device, you could be at ease when connected to the internet and doing all your transactions online.

Some anti-virus software requires a subscription for you to use them, either monthly or annually renewed. But for most people who are into finance or business with a large number of transactions online, having this kind of software is a necessity. It is one way of investing in your business' protection and security.

Use Complex Passwords.

It is one of the easiest to hack online. Be sure that you have composed a completely hard-to-guess password, and if possible, don't include commonly used pattern numbers, birthdates, addresses or phone numbers as your password.

To make a strong password, it should include:

  • At least 8-32 characters
  • One uppercase letter
  • One lowercase letter
  • At least one number
  • At least one unique character

You may also opt to choose to activate a 2-factor authentication which you should accomplish to make your account more secure. Google has created an application that generates 6-digit codes to make sure that your account is secure.

Back-Up your Files.

Make sure to back up all of your files in case of an immediate need to reformat your device. If it is infected with a virus, backing up your files can be a real lifesaver in any situation!