It’s hard to imagine life without the internet. Communication has changed severely through the world wide web. We can learn things with the click of a button and speak to people all over the world. However, a major caveat is an increased need for safety awareness. Here are seven tips for ensuring internet safety.
1. Be Careful Who You Talk To
Everyone can seem trustworthy on the internet, because they can make themselves sound that way. Through a keyword, they can craft compelling messages that make them seem more honest than they really are. Things that can usually tell you a lot about someone, like body language, can’t be discerned on the internet, unless you’re speaking to someone through video chat. Even then, it’s not as easy compared to meeting them in person.
2. Sniff Out Scams
If something seems too good to be true, that’s probably because it is. Scammers will prey on naive people by giving them bogus claims of job offers and sweepstakes wins. You don’t have to be incredibly perceptive to know when someone is trying to rip you off. They’re hoping you’ll fall for their trickery, but you won’t.
3. Keep Things to Yourself
Sharing personal information can be a huge liability for online safety. If you give out your bank account information, your social security number, or even your home address, you could put yourself in danger. There are times when this is necessary, such as applying for a job or credit card. To make sure a site is secure, check to make sure it has an “https” URL, which means personal information won’t be compromised.
4. Social Media Responsibly
Facebook and Instagram can be great tools for keeping up with friends and sharing about your life, but they can also pose dangers. People will try to scam you through these sites. Make sure you stay alert about any suspicious messages and report profiles that seem fake or taking part in illegal activities. It’s also important to only share things that you are comfortable with others seeing. Anything inflammatory or scandalous is better off not being posted.
5. Strong Passwords
The security of your internet accounts often comes down to your passwords. If your passwords are obvious enough, your accounts can be hacked into easily. Make sure that your passwords are strong. You should try adding different characters such as numbers and various punctuation. It’s also advisable to change your passwords on a regular basis.
6. Choose Safe Networks
Do you wonder why you need to have a password for your WiFi network? It’s not to make things more difficult. Instead, it’s to ensure that your information is protected. On an open network, sensitive information can be breached much more easily. Should there be anything vital you need to pull up, it’s best to do so on a password-protected network.
7. Shop Smart
Online stores let you purchase seemingly everything under the sun with a few clicks. However, you should still be cautious. Before giving out your credit card information, make sure that a website has the “https” URL. You should also check to make sure they have fair practices, such as allowing returns and that they have responsive customer service.
Going on the internet isn’t dangerous, but it can be used in dangerous ways. The signs of someone trying to scam or otherwise harm you are usually pretty clear, you just need to be aware of them. By following these tips, you can have a much safer internet experience.