The vast majority of modern users do not care about their online security at all. People share personal information via social networks carelessly, trust that browsers will keep their passwords safe, and wrongly believe that the Internet is a friendly environment. But you shouldn’t be naive. The modern World Wide Web is a dark street where you can meet not only some harmless passers-by but also the real criminals. They have enough possibilities to follow you for a long time, collect your sensitive data for subsequent theft, blackmailing, or phishing.
The Internet today is something more complicated than just simple means of communication with friends, posts on social networks, games, online shopping. It’s a wide information system, and if it seems like you have nothing to hide or no one needs your information, you’re deeply mistaken. Cybercriminals know how to use any information about you for their purposes. It is terrifying that intruders can use absolutely any info we share daily with friends and loved ones at any moment. It is not paranoia; it is a reality of the digital era.
However, every Internet user can protect themselves from various unpleasant things connected with the global network. Everything you need is to follow some basic rules, which can help to prevent some disastrous outcomes.
Control of Personal Information
Try to talk about yourself as little as possible. That is especially true for social media. Each time you register a new account in the social networks, change your privacy settings. Your profile should only be visible to the people you know. It also applies to the posts and messages you leave on your page. You don’t have to make your photos publicly available, especially if they’re taken from your home. Many people have such a strong desire to share personal information that even the storyline updates indicate the exact dates of their vacations.
The main danger of social networks is the necessity to indicate all possible information about yourself. Often you have to fill in the boxes and mention your workplace, university, favorite shops, and other spots. In such a way, you make the life of cybercriminals much easier. They even don’t have to hack anything!
Anonymity, More Anonymity!
For more anonymity, you can hide your IP address. Use a reliable VPN service to hide your location or identity and protect yourself better. When the request is made, the program transmits the data to the provider via a special encrypted connection. After that, all your data is sent to the VPN server for further decryption, and then masked.
Forget About Date of Birth
Don’t even dare to use your date of birth as your password. Come up with complex passwords consisting not only of letters and numbers but also of characters and symbols. Do not use the same password for all the accounts you have. Try to create some variations of your password and use it to register on another service. Not to forget each of them, find a reliable password manager, or come up with a thoughtful algorithm of password variations, for instance, adding abbreviations of the services to your password or something like that.
No Links, No Drama
Try not to follow the links from personal messages. Copy the link your friend sent you and open it in a new incognito tab. Most cases of personal information stealing also fall on the so-called social network games and applications. Be attentive, especially in the cases when the app asks permissions and full access to your page. Try not to specify your real information, and do not fill in the boxes that are not mandatory for registration.
Antivirus is Your Friend
We think it is not necessary to talk about the necessity to have a reliable antivirus, which will protect your confidential data. Choose the software, which provides a secure firewall, decent antimalware protection, and anti-phishing tools, for example, ESET antivirus. Its efficient heuristic base copes with all types of threats, even the newly emerged ones.
By following these simple rules, you can protect yourself from many troubles that are waiting for you on the Internet. You need to be attentive to your data and digital privacy.