Every day we use the Internet for a multitude of different tasks. We check emails, read the latest news, look up sports scores and stats, and that’s all before we start our work day. The Internet, while necessary to perform our jobs, is also the new “Wild, Wild, West”. Today there are a number of different things that we do that can leave us and our companies at risk. Below are just four easy-to-follow tips that can safeguard you from falling victim.
Don’t rely on your browser to protect you from malicious websites. Browsers only warn you about sites but cannot stop you from going there. Even if you have high security settings and anti-virus software, visiting a risky web site can result in viruses, spyware or worse.
Beware of windows or pages that prompt you to click a link to run software. Malicious web sites can create prompts that look like messages from your browser or computer. The safest thing you can do is not to install any software if you weren’t expecting to install anything.
Don’t provide personal information to get something free online. Criminals may use this data to break into personal or work accounts.
Watch for shortened URLs, and numbers, hyphens or special characters in a URL. Scammers manipulate URLs to trick users. Be wary of URL’s posted in Facebook and sent via email. Use a search engine to identify the actual URL.
There are a number of different ways that we can mindlessly leave ourselves open to risks on the Internet. When it comes to staying safe in this “new frontier” knowing is much more than half of the battle. Practice these tips daily as you surf, chat, email, post and purchase to keep your personal and corporate data protected. Check back next week for the next four tips for staying safe on the Internet.