Internet security and privacy are serious issues, especially when you make purchases online, use online banking or engage in other activities that require you to share personal information. It’s great to have access to the Internet, but you have to be cautious and make sure you have the software and systems in place to protect your identity. There are a few things that you can do to protect yourself online when you are using internet in your apartment.
Install a Security Software Program
You should subscribe to or purchase a security software program to download on your computer. Look for the following features in any software you choose:
- Spyware detection and removal
- Anti-spam features
- Anti-virus features
It’s easy to get spyware on your computer while surfing the Internet. When you have software in place to detect spyware, an alert will pop up and give you the option to remove it, which you should. Update the software when you receive the reminders, because there are new viruses online every day.
Be Picky About Email
One of the quickest ways to get a virus on your computer is to open attachments from strangers sent in your email inbox. It’s a method that hackers use to violate your Internet security and privacy. You should not open those emails at all, and instead mark them as spam. Then, send them to your trash folder. If you’re not sure what to do, use your security software program to scan the attachment for viruses first.
Hold Tight to Your Personal Information
There are many enticing offers on the Internet, such as an offer for a free e-book, an entry for a valuable giveaway or your chance to receive a huge discount on insurance rates. In order to get your “prize,” you have to fill out a form that requires you to submit personal information, such as you mailing address, telephone number and maybe even your social security number.
It’s easy for a personal identity thieve to steal your information and open accounts in your name. Some thieves run those websites, which are scams to collect personal information. Don’t give anything more than a first name and email address in most cases. In all cases, you should contact the company directly and do you research to make sure that they are reputable, before giving out your social security number.
Vary Your Passwords
Remembering all your passwords can be a pain in the neck, but what you don’t want to do is have one password for everything. Someone could get a hold of your computer, figure out the password, and they could access all of your accounts and do major damage. They could also do it remotely. Create different passwords with at last seven or eight characters, and mix them with letters and numbers. Write them down in a secure location so that you can refer to it if you forget what they are.
Spending money on software to ensure your Internet security and privacy is nothing compared to the risk of identity theft and other damages to your computer and online accounts. Don’t wait to get hacked before you get motivated to protect yourself online.