staying safe online
Jane’s in the mood for some online shopping. After searching, she finds the perfect jacket and adds it to her basket. Minutes later, she checks out and moves on with her day, forgetting about the purchase.
A few days later, Jane’s at a café, about to purchase her favourite drink when her card gets rejected. Then she gets a call from her bank:
“Hello, Jane. We’re seeing some unusual activity on your account. Can you confirm these charges?”
Uh oh. It’s a fraud alert. Jane finds out that someone made a huge withdrawal from her account. How did her information get leaked? Only then does she realise that the shopping website she used was not legitimate.
Disruptions can happen instantly when we don’t pay close attention to the services we use every day.
Common Risky Browsing Habits
Surfing the web is an integral part of our lives – when was the last time you went online?
How often do you click links to sites you don’t know or enter sensitive personal information for online purchases without checking a site’s security?
But trusting our luck can have severe consequences. Here are common browsing bad habits that we probably all fallen foul off and – most importantly – how to fix them:
IGNORING SECURITY UPDATES
Applications, software, and devices offer regular updates to address bugs, improve performance, and patch security vulnerabilities.
Fix: Prioritise these security updates to keep yourself safe online.
Using Browser Auto-Fills
It’s tempting to let your browser memorise your passwords and banking details. We’re told not to use memorable passwords and filling card details in is so slow. However, if your ends up in the wrong hands, that’s all your personal information stolen.
Fix: Say “no thanks” to auto-fills. Use a secure password manager, like LastPass, instead.
not clearing browser history
Browsing history is fodder for hackers to launch phishing attacks by impersonating our contacts or masquerading as familiar companies asking for personal information like passwords.
Fix: Use the incognito/private browser to reduce your risk when entering sensitive information.
A FRIEND IN NEED
Public Wi-Fi networks are less secure than private Wi-Fi, so they’re more vulnerable to attack. They should only be used as a last resort.
Fix: Never input private data when using public Wi-Fi.
sTAYING LOGGED INTO WEBSITES
We often trust it’s safe if we close the browser and don’t bother logging out from secure websites with our sensitive information. However, doing so leaves us at risk of physical and cyberattacks if your device is stolen.
Fix: Always actively log out of a secure website instead of simply closing the window.
A BETTER WAY TO SURF THE WEB
With so many potential loopholes for hackers to access our information online, how can we secure the locks to keep them out? Here are some tips: