Top tips to protect yourself online

2014-05-23 14:38
Government departments and agencies should not be granted exceptional exemptions to the provisions of Popi legislation, a security firm says. (Duncan Alfreds, News24, file)

Government departments and agencies should not be granted exceptional exemptions to the provisions of Popi legislation, a security firm says. (Duncan Alfreds, News24, file)

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Cape Town - With the growth of hackers intent on stealing personal data, internet users have to take extra precautions to ensure the fidelity of their information.

Reports indicate that the target for cyber criminals has shifted to financial information.

Retail giant eBay announced that 145 million of its users may be exposed after data, including customers passwords, was stolen.

What steps can you take to ensure that your data is safe?

Anton Jacobsz, managing director of Networks Unlimited told News24 that internet users can take simple and specific precautions to protect themselves.

Here are his top tips:

- Don't open any files or links from unknown users.
- Are you really expecting a huge inheritance from an unknown relative overseas?
- Always ask "Why?" Is there any plausible reason for me to have received this e-mail or attachment? If not, bin it!
- Do not use unsecured Wi-Fi or networks   
- If they are "free" and open, always use it in conjunction with a VPN or Encrypted websites (HTTPS, SSL)
- Make sure your operating system and antivirus software are up to date
- Many insecure websites take advantage of browser vulnerabilities, just because the banner looks legit, doesn't mean you can trust it
- Secure your passwords and use passwords that are not easy to guess
- Pass phrases are longer, very secure and hard to guess, for example “Sp0tL0vesToPl@yF3tch"
- Log out of accounts after use
- Education regarding basics of preventing identity theft
- User education at a young age is key, children need to understand the risks of their online activity
- News24
Read more on:    internet  |  cybercrime
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