Produced by Imogen Byers
BA (Hons) Communication & Media
The internet is AMAZING. If you are anything like me then you’re on it all the time! It’s a great platform for opening up opportunities to explore more communities, meet new people and share your own posts and pictures, however, there are so many ways where this freedom you have online can be used against you and can result in identity fraud, photos getting shared where you don’t want them, hacks, scams and viruses! The list sadly goes on! Here are a few tips to limit your vulnerability online while still making the most out of what the internet has to offer:
- Use complex passwords where possible. I know you’ve probably heard it before but having strong, long passwords for all of your critical and personal accounts (bank, student loan, shopping…) is key to making sure no one else can hack in and spend away using your precious pennies. Also using the same passwords can mean that one database hack can connect all of your accounts together and multiply the problem extortionately. If you find it hard to remember all of them, there are plenty of password managers that can help you store them securely.
- Be a selective sharer. You never know who might be viewing your social media profile, whether it be an ex with dangerous motives or a potential employer. Either way, plastering your profile with photos of you in compromising positions may not work in your favour. One rule I try to follow is don’t post anything you wouldn’t like your gran to see (when I think about how scary my gran is, it really has an impact).
- Back-up your data on a regular basis and keep an eye on the websites and emails you use and receive. Make sure that the sites you put your bank details in are legit and have https and not just http in the url, as well as a padlock to show that they are secure.
- Don’t share your passwords. This may sound really like common sense but telling your friend or partner your password to give them access may be fine at the time but in the future, could create problems if there are fallings out and any tension created as a result of this. Be safe and keep it to yourself.
So hopefully those tips are useful for us all in our internet usage, do you have anymore? Let me know in the comments below…