With just about everything moving to the internet and new scams and viruses popping up all the time, we listed their recommended Top 5 things you can do, to remain safe online.
1. Use a Virus Checker
These days everyone knows you should have a Virus Checker on your computer. However you would be surprised of how many people haven’t got around to installing one yet; or have let their installed virus checker’s license lapse and are left vulnerable.
So if you haven’t got one installed or active. Do it now!
Another important issue regarding the Virus Checker, is to ensure it’s virus database is updated to the latest version (this normally happens automatically, but sometimes it can get stuck), as well as ensure it either runs a full scan regularly, or is running realtime.
2. Keep up-to-date with Windows Updates
Virus writers and hackers are the first to find the holes/vulnerabilities in operating systems such as Windows, and popular software, such as web browsers, email clients, etc.
Windows and other well known vendors, try to keep ontop of vulnerabilities when identified, by pushing out patches/updates regularly.
If you don’t tell Windows to update automatically, make sure you manually kick it off at least once a week.
3. Look for the Lock
When you are entering personal information or payment details on a website, be sure to check the website is secure, by checking to see if it has a locked padlock symbol in the browser address bar, beside the website name.
If it isn’t present, or not locked, DO NOTenter any personal information.
4. Avoid clicking on any links in emails
Unless you are expecting an email with a link, then avoid clicking on links in emails or SMSes. Expecially if it is wanting you to sign in, or enter credit card or personal details.
This is the top way viruses, trojans, dataloggers, ransomware & malware get access to your computer or information.
Remember just because an email says it is from your bank, internet provider, Microsoft, itunes, ATO, Medicare, ebay etc, it doesn’t mean it is. The scammers have made emails look very realistic these days, and have fooled many.
Instead of clicking the link, open a fresh browser and manually type your service provider’s website address, or use your existing bookmarks, and look for the lock (tip 3) before entering private information.
Note: if you have a good Virus Checker installed (tip 1) with an up-to-date database, it will likely quarantine any suspicious emails you receive and prevent you from opening a compromised website.
5. Avoid opening any email attachments
Don’t open every email attachment you may receive, unless you are expecting it, or trust the sender.
Having said that, if a friend’s computer or email account is compromised, the virus can send bulk emails to all their friends, passing on the contaminated links/attachments.
Again a good virus checker helps minimise this risk.
Hope you have found these tips helpful and continue to stay safe online.