It’s hard to imagine day-to-day life without the option of doing so many things online. We can transfer funds, pay our bills and order a new feature film – from any place that our laptops, tablets and phones can get a signal. But every online portal opens the door to potential danger from cybercriminals eager to steal money or even one’s identity.
Here are the ten basic habits you should adopt to help keep your cyber world secure.
- Keep operating systems and application software up to date.
- Install and regularly update anti-virus and firewall protection on all computers.
- Set your browser to use medium or high security settings and to automatically install updates.
- Turn on the pop-up blocker.
- If you use social media, don’t share your full e-mail contact list – it could lead to you and your contacts receiving spam and phishing e-mails.
- Use social media privacy controls to limit who can see your online profile and posts.
- When using a wireless router device, follow the owner’s manual to securely set up your wireless network.
- Create secure passwords, at least eight characters long, that use a combination of letters (upper and lowercase), special characters, numbers and punctuation.
- Create passwords that are easy for you to remember and difficult for cybercriminals to decipher, but never your Social Security Number, phone number, bank account or other numbers that could help an identity thief.
- Visit www.onguardonline.gov to stay up-to-date on cyber-security information.