Here are the Top 5 Internet safety rules to follow to help you avoid getting into trouble online!!
1) Be careful what you download: One of the goals of cybercriminals is to trick you into downloading malware (programs or apps that carry malware or try to steal information). This malware can be disguised as an app or a popular game. Downloading things from the Internet and clicking 'Accept' on popup windows is what causes the majority of computers to get infected. Don't download apps that look suspicious or come from a site you don't trust!
2) Use strong passwords: Passwords are one of the biggest weak spots in the whole Internet security structure. The problem with passwords is that people tend to choose easy ones to remember (such as "password" and "123456"), which are also easy for cyber thieves to guess. Use strong passwords that are harder for cybercriminals to demystify. A strong password is one that is unique and complex—at least 15 characters long, mixing letters, numbers and special characters. You can use password manager software to manage multiple passwords so that you don't forget them.
3) Make online purchases from secure sites: Any time you make a purchase online, you need to provide credit card or bank account information and that's just what cybercriminals are most eager to get their hands on! Only supply this information to sites that provide secure, encrypted connections. You can identify secure sites by looking for an address that starts with https: (the S stands for secure) rather than http: They may also be marked by a padlock icon next to the address bar in your browser. Sites using popular/recognized payment sytems for online payments are also safe too.
4) Click wisely: Do not click suspicious links from untrusted sources, ‘free’ offers or unsolicited ads. They are easy to recognize: all will urge you to click on them. If it is a malicious email attachment, the text will not mention the file, instead saying ‘open the attached file and let me know what you think’.
On a website, make sure both text and link are corresponding. If you click a link to read more about wildlife conservation and instead of seeing some wild animals or forest, you get a ‘success story’ about a celebrity who made millions of dollars overnight, then it’s better to leave the page!
5) Be careful what you post online: Content shared on the internet is never deleted. Even though you may have deleted content from your profile, you don’t know who has already seen it and/or stored it. You and other users of that site might not be able to see the deleted info, but it’s still stored somewhere. You can minimize your online footprint by personally deleting info from your social media sites, which will lower the chances of your data being further shared, but the reality is that you can never completely remove yourself or your information from the internet. Do not post documents with your address and other sensitive information!
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