Here are some tips that will help you protect your computer and ultimately, the information stored on it: 9
- Keep your computer updated: Whether you choose to update your operating system software automatically or manually, we recommend making it a continuous process. Also, keep other software on your computer updated since it often includes essential bug fixes and security features that address existing vulnerabilities.
- Enable the personal firewall on your computer: This will help to keep unauthorized people from snooping around your computer when it’s connected to the Internet.
- Create strong, secure passwords: We recommend passwords that contain at least 8 characters with a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols.
- Keep personal information safe: Reduce your risk of identity theft by never sharing your personal information via email, no matter how official the email looks. Official business that requires personal information should not happen via unsecured email.
- Scan email attachments and validate links: Scan all attachments that are sent to you. Viruses can lurk in emails from friends and family. If you receive a link in an email from a trusted source, hover over the link using your mouse and look in the bottom bar of your web browser to reveal the true URL and validate that the link is legitimate.
- Log off any public areas: Remember when using a public computer or network, it is just that… Public! Be sure that you completely log off the site or machine when you are finished using it. Be especially mindful to un-check boxes that will remember your login information when logging into online services, such as email and bank accounts.
- Limit information on social media sites: People will post almost anything on social media sites. For many people, birth dates, anniversaries, addresses, phone numbers, and a lot of other personal information can be found on social media sites. Protect yourself from identity theft and other scams by limiting what information you disclose online and who can see that information.
- Avoid surfing websites that you don’t already know: Browsers are quickly becoming one of the larger vulnerabilities in computing. Adware and spyware are written specifically to exploit Internet Explorer and Firefox. So try and stick with the websites you trust.