As we are going to enter the new year, it is ritualistic to reflect on our experiences from the year and make resolutions for the New Year. Most individuals make resolutions around great health, life goals, etc. Here’s another angle to our regular list — Security guide everybody should follow to keep safe online.
To keep yourself safe on the internet — first and the main thing is — DON’T ACQUIRE LURED BY ANY FREE OFFERS. In this world, nothing comes for free!
- The man offering you a free Credit Card in any shopping mall is actually more interested in understanding your cell number, your earning information, your spending habits, your speech, and lots of such personal things.
- The pop-ups that you find every now and then while accessing the internet or playing games that are mobile, which claim to provide you with something, are really click-baits/traps. These can be quite insecure and infect your computer or cell phone.
- The café providing you free WiFi may be stealthily collecting data about your internet browsing habits, the moment you join with the free Wi-Fi.
- The cellular app asserting to quicken your lagging smartphone wants to get control of your phone and sniff each the stored passwords.
- The free antivirus software requesting your consent to share opinions with them is actually more interested in understanding your browser history and file hashes in your system.
- The caller identification apps onto your telephone, actually steal all the contacts in your phone book to build their master database of all contacts.
- Though unknowingly, you wind up giving full read access of all of the information on your telephone when you use free file-sharing programs.
And this list goes on…
While we can’t wipe out our past mistakes, we can definitely avoid doing them later on. So, let us make these resolutions this year, to keep yourself safe online.
- Buy and install superior antivirus software. Yes, cover it! It will not cost you more than a dinner in a fancy restaurant.
- Do not use pirated software. The most infamous ransomware from 2019 — STOP, was known to propagate through software cracks.
- If you’re a Windows user, use a licensed copy of it. This will make certain you get all of the latest security patches and upgrades from Microsoft.
- Apply all of the security updates for your operating systems. Remember WannaCry? Although Microsoft had a patch for this, it spread quickly through unpatched Windows Systems.
- Do not download attachments in emails received from an unknown sender. Email is among the most widespread attack vectors.
- Do not fall prey to fraudulent messages or emails, in the rush to claim the prize for a lottery that you had never purchased.
- Use social media platforms such as Facebook or Instagram sensibly. Remember you’re leaving your path behind, and anyone out there can abuse it.
- Do not accept each and every friend that asks you to make it on social networks, relationship programs, etc. The requester could do a social engineering attack on you personally.
- Never ever share your cellular number or address on any social networking website. We have seen people publicly sharing complete addresses and telephone numbers. Though they may think that it’s visible to only their friend, it may not be necessarily correct.
- Use separate email IDs for use of social networking, banking related stuff, use of research forums, etc.
- Don’t see porn sites or adult forums at precisely the exact same computer that you use for internet banking or doing any monetary transactions. These sites are full of malicious links and traps.
- Do not give your smartphone, laptop or tab for repairs without clearing your personal data out of it. This data can be redeemed or get leaked online.
- Do not throw your old notebooks, SD cards, USBs directly. Dispose off them properly. Odds are that somebody might recover your personal information stored on them and abuse it against you.