4 Tips to Protect Yourself Online

While living in an increasingly digital world has many advantages, it also has many risks. Because of this, protecting yourself from online hackers is more important than ever.

There are easy steps you can take to improve your cybersecurity. Below are four simple ways to protect your accounts, identity and online information.

Use Different Passwords

Many people use the same password for all online accounts. However, if one account gets hacked, your other accounts are immediately at risk too. Vary your passwords across online accounts to avoid this problem. If you find yourself struggling to remember passwords for specific sites, try creating a spreadsheet to keep track of them.

Shop Cautiously

Before supplying your credit or debit card information, use caution in determining the website’s security. One easy solution is only shopping at familiar online stores. If you want to purchase something from an unknown online store, check that its website URL starts with HTTPS:// and not HTTP://. This indicates the site has a more advanced security system. Most importantly, you should never provide your social security number to make an online purchase.

Ignore Pop-Ups

Have you ever received a random pop-up saying “you’ve won a new laptop” or other similar messages? Well, don’t celebrate just yet — those pop-ups likely contain a virus. To avoid this problem, enable your search engine’s pop-up blocker and close pop-ups immediately. Always remember that any site with pop-ups is likely untrustworthy.

Avoid Unknown Emails

Never open unknown emails — especially if they include suspicious links. Many hackers try to access your cyber information through fake emails. Once you click on an unknown email, your computer is at risk for viruses and information theft. Use your best judgment: if you think an email is illegitimate, it probably is.

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