The virtual world is full dangers lurking at every corner. You may never know when someone hacks into your device, online accounts, computer, etc. Most internet users – especially Aussies – believe they won’t ever fall victim to cyber-crime. However, they are sadly mistaken. Don’t wait until you become a victim. Instead, be proactive and take the required measures to protect your online privacy and financial transactions. Here are some ways to protect yourself from hackers and third-party agencies.
Use Complex Passwords:
Having a strong password is one of the best ways to protect your account. According to a report by Thycotic and Cyber security Ventures on password security, more than 3 billion user logins and passwords were stolen in 2016. This happened because most internet users aren’t very goodatcreating complex passwords.Setting a weak password is like wanting to be hacked.
To assure complete account safety, make sure your bank account password is different from the passwords you use for other websites – like your email or social media. Try tomake a password with mix letters, numbers, and special characters and make it at least 8 characters long. If you are not good at managing and remembering your password, you can use password manager. Update your password regularly (15 days recommended) and try not to store your password on your computer.
Check HTTPS before login:
While visiting any website that needs financial credentials, make sure that the login page indicates it’s a secure site. How can one check if the website they are on is secure or not? Well, you have to look over the address of that website. The address of a secure website connection starts with "https" instead of just "http". Basically, HTTPS protocol is the secure version of HTTP which ensures that all communications between your browser and the website are encrypted.
Beware of phishing emails and calls asking personal information:
Email and calls phishing scams are notorious for tricking internet users into submitting their personal and financial information. Once the cyber-criminal successfully attains a user’s confidential information, they start stealing your money by using your credentials. Never email your information, even if you are close with the recipient. You never know who may gain access to your email account, or to the person’s account to whom you are sending the email.
Don’t access your account from Public Computers:
People oftenmake financial transactions or manage their internet bank accounts on public computers, which is a big no-no. Remember, public computers may contain software that captures passwords and PINs. If you do use another computer, be sure to disable password saving, and delete history files, caches, cookies, and temporary Internet files after you logout from your account. Make sure to log-off properly because other users onpubliccomputers might be able to re-enter the site and have access to your account if you haven’t logged out properly.
Keep your system up-to-date:
When it comes to securing online financial transactions, maintaining a computer security is necessary. Use Antivirus, personal firewall, security software, encryption software. Make sure the security software on your device is up-to-date.
Remain Cautious While Using Wireless Internet Connections:
Keep in mind that unsecured Wi-Fi connections are not as secure as wired internet connections, cellular data connections or encrypted wireless networks. Many hotspots – which can be found in public areas like restaurants and airports – lower their security settings in order to make it easier for users to access these wireless networks and use them to gain internet access. This, in turn, increases the risk of an intruder intercepting your information. Therefore, if you are connecting to your own wireless network, it’s imperative that you secure the network using wireless encryption.
Keep credit card records in backup:
Have a record of all credit card numbers you keep in your wallet, so you can easily cancel them if it's stolen or lost. You may also want to have all automatic payments come from a card that you keep separate and hidden at home, so you don't have to worry about updating them all if your wallet is lost or stolen.