We all use the have to use the internet at some point so you might as well know what you’re doing!
Whether it’s for personal use to find information or you’re starting up a new business and are trying to get more customers, we all need to stay safe!
#1. Build a better password. I know it is frustrating when websites make it mandatory to have letters, numbers, punctuation, etc. included in your password but it is for a good reason. Not only is it better to have a completely unique password like “A34TKK$” instead of “JohnDoe1992” but you should also keep changing them every 30 days or so.
#2. Verify the URL address. Look in the upper right hand corner of the website URL browser bar and you should see a small lock that indicates the website uses SSL certification meaning your password and personal information are encrypted and protected.
#3.Never click on links in an email. Even if you get emails from the company all the time, hackers are getting smarter and can often replicate company logos and make you think it’s the same company. We recommend going to the actual website and looking up the information instead of going through your email links. For example one that we get occasionally is an email from Careerbuilder requesting payment information but if you look at the actual email address it was sent from it says @CBbilling.com not Careerbuilder so it was a spammer trying to get information.
#4. Educate yourself on internet security. Take time to read blogs and articles to keep up with industry news to protect yourself.
#5. Use a secure network connection. Along with the tiny padlock on the website URL, look for anti-virus/malware software information. Secure websites that start with https are always safe!
#6. Be intentional. Check your credit once a year, back up your information and request statements from your bank to make sure no one is trying to steal your identity.
#7. Manage your “smart” phones, pads & pods. When your phone alerts you that you need to update your software, do it! McAfee is a well known brand that helps with virus protection. But, also remember other things also have to be updated too like your computers, car systems, home security systems and even some high tech home appliances!
#8. Think twice about public Wi-Fi. Learn how to turn off file and print sharing and try to create a VPN (Virtual Private Network) when you are out and about.
#9. Read BEFORE you click. Don’t just click yes on accept the terms and use. Use caution and make sure the company is not going to give your information to 3rd parties.
#10. Be sociable and share but use common sense. Limit just how much you share on the internet. Too much information will put you at risk for someone to steal your identity or take advantage of you. For example if you go on vacation you can post a picture that you’re out of town but do not say that you will be out of town for 2 weeks.
If you are looking to build a personal or business site we recommend Bluehost. We personally use them and they offer different packages to fit any budget and are committed to protecting your data.
Be safe out there folks, and surf the web wisely!
*Bluehost – 10 Fundamental Tips to Stay Safe on the Internet – April 7, 2016 – Devin Sears