We have taken it upon ourselves to address the ‘top 20 bad internet habits’ we see on a daily basis. Read on to find out if you are putting your data at risk.
1. Using the same password
If your password is your dogs name on every single account, I have some bad news for you. You need to change them all asap. If a hacker gains access to one account, they will have access to ALL your accounts. You should have a different password for each account.
2. Ignoring antivirus updates
This leaves a big loophole for all kinds of malicious threats. You should keep your software up to date to maintain as much protection as possible. Setting up automatic updates means you do not have to even think about it, so there are no excuses!
3. Having too many browser extensions
Some extensions hold a risk of collecting your data or infecting your device with malware so make sure to do your research and keep your privacy protected.
4. Not using multifactor authentication
Multifactor authentication makes a hackers job 10 times harder as it adds an extra layer of security to your account. We can help with configuring WatchGuard AuthPoint, Office 365 Security and Compliance, Meraki Duo, and others. Contact us for help setting up this vital service.
5. No lock screen protection
You may think lock screen protection only deters people from stealing your phone. Wrong, leaving no protection on your phone allows the opportunity for anyone to install spyware without you noticing.
6. No computer password
Most people store their most sensitive information on their computers but do not have adequate protection. Do not put your information at risk. Passwords protect your device and always lock it when you leave it unattended.
7. No antivirus and anti-malware
The one thing worse than ignoring antivirus updates is not having any installed at all. Contact us to find out more about our firewalls and security appliances.
8. Texting passwords
Communication platforms are very easily hacked so it’s safer to never send anyone your passwords. If you struggle to remember your passwords, you can use a trusted password manager such as Thycotic Secret Server to keep them safe and at hand.
9. Clicking on links in strange emails (see our post on phishing emails!)
If it looks unusual don’t touch it. If you have seen our post on phishing emails you will already be an expert in avoiding these. If not please go give it a read for your own safety.
10. Downloading attachments without thinking
Same as previous, if it looks weird don’t touch it. If your boss has sent you an email saying “this is really urgent, please click the following link” might be worth investigating if it was really your boss who sent the email.
11. Using HTTP sites
Only browse sites that use an SSL-encrypted connection, indicated by HTTPS. These will always have a little padlock next to the URL to show you the connection is secure, and the site is safe to use.
12. Checking your bank account on public Wi-Fi
Public free Wi-Fi usually lacks sufficient protection and can be a place where hackers lurk. When using public Wi-Fi don’t check any sensitive information such as work-related things and banking.
13. Clicking on virus warning pop-ups
Pop-ups with wording such as “We have detected a threat…” “Your computer has been infected…” are usually a ploy to get you to click and install malware onto your device. Don’t click on pop ups to avoid this.
14. Using “123456” as your password
If you are using passwords as weak as this, you may as well not have a password at all. Hackers can crack this password in seconds, exposing all your information.
15. Downloading files from unprotected sites
Downloading pirated movies, games and programs is not only illegal, but is the easiest way to end up with malware installed onto your device. Stick to safe downloads and purchase your movies/music/software from official trusted sites.
16. Weak Wi-Fi password
You may not even think about the security of your Wi-Fi network. This is another way a hacker can access your private information. Your best way of protecting this is creating a strong password which includes numbers, symbols, and capital letters.
17. Agreeing to all terms on software install
We are all guilty of clicking “agree” before reading the full terms and conditions. We advise you get into the habit of reading these as you could be unknowingly agreeing to your information being collected, your conversations being listened to, and other malicious activities.
18. Dismissing privacy concerns
If you feel like something isn’t right, always act on it. The longer you leave these things unseen to the more damage they can cause.
19. Thinking your phone can’t get viruses
For some reason when people think of malware, hackers and viruses they associate them only with computers. Your phone can get all of these too, so make sure your security is solid over ALL your devices.
20. Not using a VPN when using public Wi-Fi
A great way to stay safe when using public Wi-Fi is to use a virtual private network or (VPN). This allows you to remain anonymous and makes it harder for hackers to find you and your information.
The great news is that we can help you with all of the above. If you are worried about your cyber security and data protection give us a call on 01743 636 562.