How to Protect Yourself From Cyber Threats
As the Internet age continues to boom, cyber security is becoming more and more important, not just for large companies and businesses. Digital hackers are breaching networks large and small and you and your family could be potential targets if you’re not careful. Although the risks are increasing as cyber-attacks become more common, so too are the precautions you can take to secure your network and information housed within.
According to the Department of Homeland Security, there are many simple tips to keeping your networks as secure as possible, and many of them are good habits to form. When it comes to being online, we can’t escape the necessity, but you can form practices to help you become less vulnerable. Some of these home safety tips include:
Never clinking on links in emails, even if it is provided by a trusted or known retailer. Things can get lost in the digital communication, so it’s better to go straight to the website than use a link.
Don’t open attachments—trustworthy retailers don’t use them.
Never give out your personal information online. Just don’t do it. It may seem safe because you’re working with a well-known company or your landlord, however, even they won’t always be able to protect your information from an experienced hacker.
Choose your passwords wisely. Don’t think of something that’s easily guessable, like your birthday or your street address. These are common and most hackers know exactly the formulas people tend to use for passwords. Stay away from anything that is available online. For example, if you have your favorite pet pictured on Facebook or other social channels, don’t use that pet as a password. This gives outsiders inside information, making it easier for them to guess your passwords. Try to think outside the box and never share your passwords with anyone.
It’s also advisable not to use the same password for every site you use. In the case that a hacker does succeed in breaking into one of your accounts, they won’t have the information for several sites if you use different codes. Additionally, thinking of different ways to spell words can be helpful when trying to create a secure password. Interchange numbers for letters, letters for number, and use symbols when it makes sense to you. This way, your password is much more difficult to guess and therefore more secure.
Don’t forget to update your anti-virus and operating systems. These help protect against threats and cybercrime.
Always be suspicious. When it comes to the Digital Age, you just never know. So when online, never be completely trusting of a site or a link or an address. It’s very easy for smart hackers to rework commonplace things like this, so you should keep an eye out for anything that seems odd, and always follow the safety measures we just discussed.
When it comes to installation, have a professional setup your network and help you understand how to best protect it. Professionals will never ask for your passwords or personal information, however, they can help you build networks that will be safe, secure, and functional. If someone ever does ask you for any passwords or what you want your password to include, simply stop working with them and get a new installer. No one from a reputable company will ever ask for anything that could breach your security and endanger your personal information.
It’s better to be safer and a little more skeptical when it comes to cyber security than to be too trusting, so always use extra precaution when dealing with important information online, including your mobile devices, and be sure to ask any questions about bettering your protection to a trusted installer.