Browse the internet securely using these methods

In 2018, Facebook-Cambridge Analytica data scandal was one of the turning points in the Tech industry. Before that, there were many concerns regarding data mining and the way users’ data is used by corporations but the public revelation of this scandal made things even worse for every Tech giant of the silicon valley. There was a widespread concern for privacy and the general public for the first time, collectively started questioning about- ‘How safe their precious personal data is?’ Even though Facebook as of now seemed to have recovered from it to a certain extent, this scandal from 2018 gave birth to the concern of private data which almost every netizen feels. In order to ease things up a little for netizens, here are some methods and tools that you should use in order to browse the internet more securely.     

1. Install and use an Antivirus

Antivirus software is an essential first step to live a more secure life online. Antiviruses would not only protect you from malicious viruses from an external device but also protect your system from malicious websites, shady chrome extensions and much more. An efficient and effective antivirus protects its users from all kinds of malware. A third-party Antivirus should not be undermined against Microsoft’s Windows Defender Security Center. For a matter of fact, even a free version of most third-party Antivirus softwares are better than Microsoft’s Windows Defender Security Center. Installing and using a third-party Antivirus can give users more protection against different kinds of malware. In order to get the most out of an Antivirus, users must always run security checks and update their antivirus from time to time.

2. Use unique passwords or a Password Manager

It’s 2019 and for 2018 the most common password used was 12345678. People usually ignore the importance of a unique and difficult to guess password. They often opt in for easy to remember and easy to crack passwords that often leads to frauds and scams for users. In a situation where a hacker has gathered usernames and passwords from a website, he’d try to access your account on different websites using the username and password that he/she acquired. And in cases where users have synched their accounts to only one Gmail account, hackers can easily access all your data without many hurdles. So, I’d personally recommend users to use different accounts for different purposes and to use a unique and powerful password for all of their accounts. The easiest way to do it is to use a password manager. The main task of a password manager is to generate unique and difficult to crack passwords that hackers and viruses can’t get through. In case of using a password manager, user should never forget their password manager’s password as it securely vaults all other passwords of the user. For a safer side, one can always remember their email passwords which are synched with other websites.

3. Understand other security tools

Using an antivirus to scan your computer for malicious files and viruses and to cleanse it if necessary is so 2010. With time as technology has advanced so have hackers and RansomWare. So in order to have a secure presence online and to stay safe from malicious viruses and RansomWare, users should understand and learn about various security tools that they can deploy on their system to browse securely. Users can either upgrade their current Antivirus program or opt-in for a new program altogether or equip a new security tool that helps them secure their data. The point is to stay updated with both the information about malicious viruses and the cure or tool needed to tackle any potential threat to your system.

4. Use a VPN

Virtual Private Network or VPN is a technology that creates a safe and encrypted connection over a less secure network, like a cafe or public Wi-fi. VPN technology was developed as a way to allow remote users and branch offices to securely access corporate applications and other resources but now, it is used by users to safely access the net by using a private network. VPN services are easy to use and are available across all platforms of devices. Use of a VPN is strongly recommended for people who access the web using open wifi because open networks are comparatively easier to crack into and by targeting an open network hackers can gain access to multiple users at the same time. So in order to not fall prey to hackers and Ransomware, use VPN services when browsing the web through an open network.  

5. Use Two-Factor Authentication

Two-factor authentication can be a pain for some people, but it makes your account more secure by adding another layer of protection. If your account does not have two factor authentication anyone with a username and password can access your account. But with two factor authentication, things become a little difficult for hackers. Some services that offer two factor authentication are Evernote, Gmail and Dropbox. Fun fact- most password managers support two factor authentication, and some of them only require it when they detect a connection from a new device. Two factor authentication is a feature that is offered for free by various service providers so in order to browse the web more safely, we recommend using two factor authentication.

6. Use mobile payments rather than Debit/Credit cards

In some cities of China, use of plastic currency and paper currency is negligible because everything from buying groceries to paying fine for rash driving is done using a mobile wallet app which is either a AliPay or WeChat. In China, their motive of using mobile pay is different but the method is not only efficient, but it is also more secure than paying using credit or debit cards. When users use a debit or credit card, they expose an important piece of private information which hackers can later use to get more information on their prey. Users can use mobile payment apps like Samsung pay or Google pay or even Apple pay to do digital transactions more securely. And please add a good layer of passwords on your mobile phone and stay away from malicious websites while browsing the web from your phone.

7. Don’t save passwords on your browser

Many familiar web browsers like Google Chrome and others have the ability to save multiple passwords of its users. Users should avoid doing so because if in a situation in which they are attacked by a malicious file which has the ability to access their browser, leaves user with no option but to lose his/her saved accounts only because he or she forgot to remove his or her saved passwords from the browser. Instead, they can use a password manager like lastpass to manage all the passwords and usernames.

8. Don’t get ClickBaited’

Clickbait. We all get clickbaited at one point or the other. I personally get clickbaited on various YouTube videos. But in order to live a safe online life users must avoid getting clickbaited, as in most of these cases, these clickbaits have a bug aur malicious file planted into it which then exposes users’ important and personal information to the hacker. Some examples of clickbait are- spam messages on Facebook, easy methods to make money online links, spam emails and so on.

9. Check and Protect your Social Media Privacy

After Facebook’s data scam, awareness for privacy settings increased but still not everyone keeps a check and updates their privacy settings on social media. Checking Privacy settings of social media application like Instagram or any other service is necessary because it sets rules and regulations for other users to access your social media posts and in some cases users can also restrict the service from accessing their personal data.

10. Clear that Cache

Cached data, saved cookies and browser history know a lot about the user. This valuable information can be used by hackers to point to home address, family information, and other personal data. To protect your personal information from lurking through your web history, it is important to clear cache from time to time. it is another free method that users can apply to browse the web more safely.

So, this was our list of 10 ways through which users can browse the web more securely and can keep their personal data safe. As mentioned before, security of ourselves from Malware and hackers is a continuous process and requires regular efforts. In order to live a safe internet life, users should follow all of the above-mentioned methods and ensure that the tools that they’re using to help them like Antiviruses etc are up to date.  If you have any suggestions or recommendations, drop us a comment down below. For more app recommendations and software that you might want to use, read our other articles as well.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.