Things You Shouldn’t Do Online

Essential Internet Safety Tips
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Essential Internet Safety Tips

Be careful where you click

A careless click can expose your personal data online or infect your device with malware. That’s why it’s essential to browse consciously and avoid certain types of online content such as links from untrusted sources and spam emails, online quizzes, clickbait, ‘free’ offers, or unsolicited ads.

If you receive an email you’re not sure about, avoid clicking on any links within it or opening any attachments.

In fact, it’s best to avoid opening untrusted emails at all. If you’re not sure whether an email is legitimate or not, go directly to the source. For example, call your bank and ask if the email is genuine.

When you’re on a website, make sure links click through to relevant or expected topics for example, if you click on a link that you think is about, say, safaris in Africa, but instead, you’re taken to a clickbait-style page about celebrity weight loss or a ‘where are they now?’ style piece, then quickly close the page.

Essential Internet Safety Tips

Be careful what you download

A top goal of cybercriminals is to trick you into downloading malware. Malware might be disguised as an app. Malware causes damage such as disrupting how your device operates, stealing your personal data, or allowing unauthorized access to your machine.

Make sure your internet connection is secure

When you go online in a public place, for example, using a public Wi-Fi connection, you have no direct control over its security. Using public Wi-Fi is not always safe but can be unavoidable when you are out and about.

If you are using public Wi-Fi, avoid carrying out personal transactions such as online banking or online shopping.

If you need to do this, use a Virtual Private Network or VPN. A VPN will protect any data you send over an unsecured network. If you don’t use a VPN, save any personal transactions until you can use a trusted internet connection.

Choose strong passwords

Passwords are one of the biggest weak spots when it comes to cybersecurity. People often choose passwords that are easy to remember and, therefore, easy for hackers to guess.

In addition, using the same password for multiple sites puts users at risk because if hackers obtain your credentials from one site, they can potentially access other sites which use the same login.

Use a good antivirus and keep it up-to-date

As well as following safety tips for online behavior, it’s essential to use a good quality antivirus. Internet security software guards your devices and data and blocks common threats like viruses and malware, plus complex ones like spy apps.

Felicity Gitonga
Felicity Gitonga is the founder of Africa Business News. abn, freelance writer, journalist, and author with a passion for telling stories.

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