These days, it is easier than ever to connect to the Internet. Whether it’s through a cell phone in your pocket, a computer at work, or a lapbook or tablet at your home, these devices are a constant in our lives. Social media, bill paying, email, text messages, and online shopping are all things we do every day, but are also all things that could open us up to cybercrime. Hackers are always finding new and better ways to get our financial information, steal passwords, and wreck our lives. Here are five cybersecurity best practices to help keep you safe from those who want to steal from you.
1. Be Careful with Passwords
Hackers find ways to steal passwords all the time. They have AI and various software that allows them to either record key touches or scan through thousands of possible password combinations. It is of the utmost importance that you create and use extremely strong passwords. Do not use words or number combinations that have any connection to your life, like children’s names and birthdates, You can use password generation software that will come up with completely random and very strong passwords as well.
2. Know How to Recognize Phishing Scams
Phishing scams commonly come through email or text. They will try to convince you to click on a link and enter your username and password for what you think is a legitimate site, like your bank. Learn the signs of phishing emails: poor quality images, links that go somewhere other than the official company site, requests for usernames and passwords specifically, and threats of danger like saying your account is in peril.
3. Don’t Use Public Networks
Public wifi seems so easy when you can just hop on the Internet in shops and restaurants, but if those networks are not password protected, then hackers can connect to them as well and possibly use that as a way to hack your device. Avoid networks that allow you to connect without a password.
4. Use Antivirus Software
Quality antivirus software should be considered a must as well. It can constantly scan and protect you from viruses and other cybersecurity threats.
5. Be Wary of Links
Links are everywhere and they are so easy to click. Links to shopping sites, research articles, to just about anything you could imagine including scam sites that may ask for your credentials or even payment information. Whenever you are considering clicking on the link, take a look at the actual URL that the link points to. Is it a legitimate site? When in doubt, don’t click on the link and navigate to the site on your own.
Cybercrime is rampant all the time, and technology is a regular part of life. This means hackers are constantly looking for new ways to try to steal your personal information, identity, and financial information. If they are successful, the result could be very costly to you. Make sure you follow these five best practices for cybersecurity to put up your line of defense.