The Internet is a dangerous place, and cyber criminals are getting more creative in ways to target you and your invaluable personal information.
Here are a few computer safety tips that will help you protect yourself and your family from online predators:
- Don’t click on any links inside an email unless you know for sure where it is going to.
- When you go to any website read the address bar on top to make sure you are in the right website. Example: www.aol.com
- Don’t ever click on an email attachment that ends with .exe .vbs .com these are programs that contain viruses. Example: LoveLetter.exe
- Be very careful when you visit unknown websites.
- Don’t download anything from unknown websites but if you have to, then save it, scan it with a strong Anti Virus software and then open it if it is clean.
- Learn about new Phishing and Social Engineering techniques hackers use.
- Install one strong Internet Security program and keep it up to date. Run full scans often.
- Use Firefox or Microsoft Edge (Windows 10) browsers instead of Internet Explorer (they is safer). Keep it up to date.
- Install the NoScript browser extension for Firefox that blocks pop ups. www.noscript.net
- Increase the level of email filtering in Outlook.
- Install OS updates and patches.
- Disable Adobe Acrobat Java Script & opening file attachments with external applications.
- Password tips:
- Change your password often.
- Use a mix of letters, numbers, and special characters (e.g. a-z, A-Z, 0-9, @,#,$,%) with at least 8 digits long.
- Use both uppercase and lowercase letters.
- Don’t pick a password that you have already used in the past or used it for a different online account.
- Don’t use Names, Words and Numbers that have a personal connection to you. (e.g. Date of birth, pet name, spouse’s name, etc.).
- Don’t use words that are in the dictionary.
- Don’t use the same password for all of your accounts especially online banking accounts.
- If your password gets into the wrong hands, it can cause a major damage to your personal information and online accounts.
- Here is a suggestion to come up with a password that you can remember: Make up a sentence you can easily remember such as “I have 2 kids: Jake 4 Amy 2”. Then take the first letter in every word in the sentence including the punctuation and you’ll end up with: Ih2k:J4A2
Most importantly, Hire an IT professional to make sure that your computer is working properly and your personal information is safe, secure & properly backed-up.