Internet security is becoming more and more important, as cybercriminals find ever-more ingenious ways to access our data and accounts. You may think you are already protected, but as threats change over time, so does the recommendations on the best way to stay secure, so it’s worth checking you are doing everything you can to keep yourself safe online.
Stop anyone getting in
Anti-virus software is still essential for basic security. It may not be a guarantee against attacks, but it will deal with any existing malware and virus threats and will take care of pretty much everything for you, with only the newest and most ingenious codes getting past your defenses. Password security is another oldie, but goodie, and the more complex and unpredictable your password is the harder it will be to crack. Websites are increasingly requiring better passwords with longer strings of characters containing upper and lower-case letters, numbers and special characters. If you are hopeless at remembering passwords, use a password manager service rather than writing your security information down. You can also use lock-down security measures like two-step authentication, where the website you are accessing sends you a code via your cell phone that you must enter onto the screen. The technology for this is evolving too, with external key devices and pre-set cell phone key authentication methods now available. Biometrics are finally starting to make their presence felt, and are a sound way to stop anyone except yourself accessing your devices.
Use smart systems
Make sure your software is up to date so that any security upgrades are active. Software companies release patches or new versions of their programs as soon as they can combat a new threat, so you need to update your system to protect yourself fully. New security threats are proving more difficult to detect as the malware is using familiar code to bypass the anti-virus software, so don’t take any chances – apply your patch as soon as you get it. Proxy servers can be useful in certain situations, for example, you can set them to block known malicious sites and provide encryption services, particularly useful for businesses. Using a proxy can also keep your IP address and location private, making your Internet use more anonymous. You can find out about proxy servers at tech specialist sites like White Summary, but make sure using a proxy is right for your circumstances as they do have their own pitfalls.
Keep up to date on security developments and be aware of new threats to your system and how they are transmitted. Backing-up your files may be boring, but it is essential. A few minutes taking care of this every day could mean you will avoid the possibility of losing everything on your hard drive, should you suffer an attack. Ransomware is being more widely used, where the criminal takes control of your computer system remotely and threatens to delete all your files unless your transfer money to them. If everything is backed up, you do not need to worry, as their threat is pointless – even if they wipe the computer you have all the files on a remote hard drive or secure cloud storage so that you can restore everything very easily.