How To Stay Safe Online In 2021 | Cyber Safety For 2021
There is nothing 100% safe as long as you are on the internet. With hacks, scams, malware, the internet can feel like a dangerous place these days. However, by implementing a small handful of security measures we can greatly reduce our exposure to all these threats. So, here are some Cyber Safely tips for 2021.
Beware Of Public WiFi
Public Wi-Fi networks may be convenient to use and have become the norm, but hackers may be able to view your online activity while you’re browsing on these unsecured networks. If you have connected to the network previously, then your smart phone may automatically connect when you are not even aware.
This information can be used to hijack your personal accounts or steal sensitive information. In a public space, restaurant, or even your favorite coffee shop, the hacker may be sitting right next to you, and watching your every cyber move. Never access your financial accounts on a public Wi-Fi network!
Avoid Public USB Charging Stations
Although the charging system is offered as a courtesy and is convenient, cybercriminals have figured out how to implant malware into charging cables, and how to hack into USB charging stations in shopping malls and airports. Be sure to bring your own charging cable and power adapter.
Consider Using A VPN
VPN creates a virtual encrypted tunnel between you and a remote server operated by a VPN service. All external internet traffic is routed through this tunnel, so your data is secure from prying eyes. Best of all, your computer appears to have the IP address of the VPN server, masking your identity. When your data reaches the VPN server, it exits onto the public internet. If the site you’re heading to uses HTTPS to secure the connection, you’re still secure. But even if it was intercepted, it’s difficult to trace the data back to you, since it appears to be coming from the VPN server.
Stop Clicking Random Short URL Links
How easy is it to hide a link to something disgusting, unsafe, or illegal inside a short link? Way too easy. Head to bit.ly and follow the instructions. And that’s just one of many URL shorteners out there. How bad could it be? If an unsuspecting user were to click the e-mail link, land on what appears to be eBay.com (but is actually a malicious site) and log in as requested, the hackers now have their user name and password. From there, they have full access to the user’s account, including credit card info. Using that information, they can also try logging in to other websites (many people re-use the same password), e-mail accounts and corporate accounts.
Avoiding Spam Messages
Beyond the obvious things—like never, EVER clicking on a link in a spam message, or even opening a spam email—the best way to avoid spam is to never let them get your address. It’s almost impossible, but there are methods to mitigate.
Turn On Security Updates
Software Updates are the most annoying notification that we often get and it seem to happen at the most inopportune times. Most of us neglect the software updates and carry on our works. In fact, many of the more harmful malware attacks we see take advantage of software vulnerabilities in common applications, like operating systems and browsers. These are big programs that require regular updates to keep safe and stable. So instead of procrastinating about software updates, see those updates as one of the most essential steps you can take when it comes to protecting your information.
To help you gain a better understanding into the importance of updating your software, we’ve highlighted some points that you may be overlooking. Read on to find out exactly why software updates are important to take advantage.
- Know that keeping your security software up-to-date is critical. This will protect you from the latest threats.
- Select auto-update for software on both your mobile devices and computers, when possible. For software that doesn’t update automatically, make it a habit to regularly check for and apply available updates.
- Before downloading any software, read others’ reviews first to make sure it’s safe to install in the first place. Cybercriminals like to distribute phony applications designed to steal your information.
- Keep on top of the latest threats so you know how to protect yourself from known vulnerabilities.