7 Ways To Stay Safe Online

Going surfing can be a dangerous business these days.

stay-safe-when-surfing-the-internet

Scam artists prey on those looking to make quick bucks.

Hackers are looking to compromise your system’s security.

Viruses are everywhere.

Thieves like you so much that they want to steal your identity.

The following 7 tips could help you stay safe from some of these malicious attacks –

1. INSTALL ANTIVIRUS SOFTWARE

Antivirus software is designed to protect your system from scripts and programs that can damage the operation of your computer or steal your personal data.

Such software protects your system by scanning all incoming data.

Antivirus programs can prevent destructive programs from ever taking a hold on your computer but make sure you update them regularly.

2. USE A FIREWALL

A firewall can block unauthorised persons from accessing your computer across the internet or via wireless LAN.

A firewall can prevent hackers from ever entering your system.

Most modern operating systems come with firewall protection as standard but you should always ensure that you never WWW without one.

3. INSTALL A POP-UP BLOCKER

Pop-up adverts are a major annoyance on the internet.

Not only that, but some pop-ups will try and trick you into downloading viruses, trojans and other malware.

Modern computers have pop-up blockers pre-installed to protect your browsing.

If you don’t have a pop-up blocker installed already then perhaps you should change your browsing software?

4. BEWARE OF FAKE VIRUS WARNINGS

Fake virus warnings are often utilised by scammers who are looking to get you to buy their useless anti-virus software.

Or, they are used to actually deliver other scumware, such as trojans.

Never forward virus warnings that you receive in e-mails as they may have been designed to scare the recipients into downloading trojans or removing important system files from their computer.

5. PASSWORD PROTECTION

Always use a  hard to guess password with at least six characters or, preferably, much longer.

Do not use ‘dictionary words’ or names of relatives.

Instead, try for a mixture of letters, numbers and symbols.

This will slow down anyone trying to break your password protection.

6. CHAT LINES, SOCIAL NETWORKS AND MESSAGE BOARDS

You should never, ever, disclose any kind of personal information on internet chat lines, message boards or social networking sites.

These kinds of websites are well-known by identity thieves who could use your personal data to impersonate you before committing various crimes, financial and otherwise.

7. FILE SHARING

It is advisable to never download data from file sharing sites.

The way that many clients are configured can be unsafe in the first place, plus there are a large number of files on these sites that have been infected with viruses and trojans.

Need to know more about online safety?

Here are 101 internet security tips and programs that will go a long way to securing your browsing experience.

About Lee Munson

Lee's non-technical background allows him to write about internet security in a clear way that is understandable to both IT professionals and people just like you who need simple answers to your security questions.

Comments

  1. Point #1 about having anti virus is probably the most important as unprotected machines help spread these infections in the first place.

    • Unsecured machines, as you say, are probably one of the biggest issues in internet security. I wonder just how many people are unknowing participants of botnets right now?

  2. Michael Mason says:

    You offer up some truly effective advice there. Thanks for such a comprehensive article.

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