Curiosity Killed the Computer -- Safe Browsing Practices

  • Added:
    Nov 18, 2013
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Curiosity Killed the Computer -- Safe Browsing Practices Photo by Rachel  Robinson

Your computer means a lot to you. You likely spend a good amount of time on it, and it often contains sensitive or personal information. So, to protect yourself from viruses or hackers, it’s important to take the appropriate steps. The first step toward computer safety is downloading the right software. However, though anti-malware companies provide a lot of the required protection, you are also responsible for staying safe. Here are some safe browsing tips to keep those nasty viruses and hackers away.

Guard Your Email
Just because it’s in your personal email inbox doesn’t mean it’s safe. Never open an email attachment from an unknown person or one that looks suspicious. If your friend’s email has been hacked, you may get an email from them that has bad spelling, no message, and an attachment. Contact your friend about it since they may not know their account has been hacked. If there is a link in your email to take you to a website, copy and paste it, or re-type it directly into the address bar of your browser instead of clicking on it. A link can easily be renamed to look like you are going to a different website.

Avoid Pop-ups
Pop-up ads and windows are often dangerous and misleading. By clicking on them you may be giving permission for spyware software to invade your computer. To exit the pop-up window click on the “x” in the corner. Sometimes the “close” button in the window is bogus.

Only Shop on Secure Sites
Whenever you register on a website or make a payment, you are entering personal information that will go through a few digital hands before it reaches its destination. Before putting in personal information, check the site to make sure it is a secure one that will encrypt your information as it soars through the internet. The web address should begin with “https” and there should be a little picture of an unbroken padlock. Either use Incognito mode or clear the browsing data afterward including the cache, saved autofill information, saved passwords and cookies. You can find these options in your browser’s toolbar.

Monitor Your Children
Don’t let your kids be a threat to your family. Customize the parental controls and don’t let them browse on an administrator account. A standard account will require your password whenever someone tries to download software or a program, thus saving you from surprise attacks. Consider using programs from purchased CDs instead of from the internet where possible. This will sidestep malware completely.

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This article contains some basic steps that everyone should follow to help protect themselves online. While these steps are important to take in both a personal setting and workplace, it may be necessary to take additional steps to protect you at work. Depending on the size of your company, you may want to hire a third-party IT Company to help you protect your employees and company property.


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