Keeping it Personal and Private

With so many accounts these days from email, to social media to internet banking, we have a range of passwords or one universal one that we solemnly swear to not tell another single soul. Over each account there is confidential information, relating to friends, family member, colleagues or even clients. It is extremely important to maintain this privacy throughout your accounts to keep this information private.

Earlier this year a Eurobanometer poll revealed that around 10% of all European internet users had experienced fraud and or identity theft in some form. Given this small percentage, people did not feel threatened by cyber-crime. It was shocking to think that only 50% were recorded to have an anti-virus software installed on their computers. Furthermore, the study proved that businesses and people are ignoring the basics of protection protocol.

To help secure your information on websites and online services, below are a few things to keep in mind that will decrease the risk of being hacked.

Have a few different passwords. Having only one “universal” password could be catastrophic if someone was to get a hold of it. A good idea when creating passwords is to make them a combination of letters and figures. If it is a name or a word that is significant to only you, it will make it easier to remember and harder for others to crack.

Don’t open up emails that are from unrecognizable addresses. Opening up an email from an unknown sender can be dire. Some viruses have the ability to hack into your address book and forward spam emails to friends and associates. It can even go as far to hack into their accounts through you. Be cautious and use common sense. If something looks suspicious, more than likely it will be.

Don’t overlook ant-virus software. It’s necessary you have some sort of protective software installed in your computer. Not having any software is careless and no doubt a virus will find its way into your computer and attack your hard drive. It is important to have these software’s updated regularly to ensure your computer is protected.

This year McAfee also conducted a study and the results highlighted what will be considered as a high threat online for the year to come. One of the risks was the targeted attack on professionals as a gateway into businesses financial information. New viruses are being designed to slip through security and gain access to banking information.

With this in mind, being in control of your accounts and the only one carrying the knowledge of passwords and certain log in information should protect you from hackers. When using other colleagues or public computers, always remember to log out of each account and to never have passwords saved. Use common sense and good judgment when opening and sending emails, to protect yourself from viruses and potential hackers on the prowl.