Top 10 Tips to Protect Yourself Online In 2018

Welcome to 2018 people, the year for hope, the year for dreams, and the year in which some of us hope we finally stick to our New Year’s resolution. Yes, we have advanced into another year, and for most of us, we have no idea what the future holds. Technology will be advancing, and we will probably become lazier as more and more processes and services will be done online. In fact, now that we think about it, we already do a lot of our everyday tasks, online, from the comfort of our handy tablet or smartphone. With all these processes being done through the power of the mighty web, it makes you ask yourself, how safe are we from cyber-crime and hackers?

Everyone is producing gigabytes of data daily now as thanks to the introduction of big data and unstructured data, more and more information is being tracked and documented by anyone who knows how to do it. Businesses can do it to create convenience for their customers, so surely that means there are people out there who plan on not using it for good. Whether it be your IRD number, debit card details or personal information, hackers and cybercriminals will find ways to steal from you or exploit you for their own personal gains. This is why it is so crucial to be up to date on your cybersecurity. Whether it’s a wee password change or even the shifting of mindset to being as paranoid as old mate Gary who lives down the road with a tin foil hat. Thinking critically about cyber security is very important, especially when it comes to online shopping and internet banking. This is why we have developed this quick list of tips you should consider when coming into the New Year.


Get an Antivirus:

No one likes to pay for them, but the more expensive ones are always going to be better. With cybercrime constantly advancing, making sure you get yourself protected before it’s too late, is your best bet.


Keep your machine updated:

Turn on auto updates so that the software you are using is always the latest one. Manufacturers develop these updates to patch any mistakes that have been exploited by hackers or identified through use. So getting the latest one can stop you from falling victim to the large wave of Hackers who quickly catch on.


Rotate your Passwords:

Please don’t use the same password for everything. One of our staff members did once, and he had to spend a good couple of hours deleting the posts everyone created on all of his social media accounts. Having the same password can be dangerous as although our staff member only had a few posts he had to explain, you might not get off so lucky.


Don’t give information about your location:

If you are away from home, don’t post photos of your holiday location or the tickets you have got. You don’t want people to know you are away and how long your home will be vacant for.


Check your transactions weekly:

Check them all while you can still remember them and make sure everything is all correct. The bank might not be able to recognise an unfamiliar transaction, but you can.


Check the URLs before you click on them:

If you receive a link for a website from an email, hover your mouse over the URL and check to see if it matches up with the known website before you click into it. Also with any messages, you receive, try to judge the tone and check for misspellings and check to see if it is consistent with others from the retailer.


Check for the HTTPS:

As a follow up to checking the URLs, also check to see if they have HTTPS. The extra ‘s’ stands for secure and as an extra layer to the regular HTTP application. It encrypts and decrypts the data of the interaction between you and the website so that other people out there cannot get a hold of the information. So check for the extra ‘s’ and if the website doesn’t have one, then don’t give it confidential information.


Don’t save your card details:

We are all guilty of being lazy sometimes when it comes to auto fill fields, but please don’t do it with your debit or credit card details. Having these details there on your computer could mean anyone could do some unexpected online shopping on your machine at your expense. Just fill in the fields yourself and don’t let any website remember your card details.


Back up your data:

This tip is important for numerous reasons but for the purpose of cybersecurity, backing up your data can help save you from ransomware attacks. A ransomware attack is when a hacker encrypts all your data and information online asks for a sum of money to have it decrypted. Having your data backed up means that you can let the hacker delete the data, and then simply factory reset your machine and re-upload the backed up data.


Don’t think you are safe:

Paranoia can be bad, but it is all right when it comes to cybersecurity. No one is ever safe as there is always someone out there who will be able to hack you. Don’t think because you don’t live in the states or work in as a C.E.O of a major corporation, that you are safe. Attacks can happen at random and to anyone who is found to be vulnerable enough. Stay alert and stay sharp when it comes to cybersecurity because there are millions of hackers out there and you just never know which one has you in their sight.