5 simple ways to improve your online safety in 5 minutes or less

September 29, 2017

Senior woman in grocery store checking smartphone
Simple steps to online safety

5 simple ways to improve your online safety in 5 minutes or less

With all the online security threats you hear about on the news, staying safe online seems almost impossible. But you can start by incorporating these five behaviours into your online activity for business and personal use.

1. Use strong, unique passwords for every site requiring login

If you can, use a unique password with a combination of upper and lower case letters and numbers/symbols , and keep it to yourself.

2. Keep your operating system up-to-date

Whether on your desktop or mobile, your operating systems should be updated regularly to deal with vulnerabilities to new security threats.

3. Only connect to Wi-Fi networks you know and trust

Outside of home and work, stick to Wi-Fi networks you know are secure, and that have password protection.

4. Turn off Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, camera, and location services

When not in secure and active use, shut them off. These functions on your mobile device can serve as an open door to hackers and others who want to invade your privacy. Check the settings for these in all your apps.

5. Don’t download from questionable sources

“Pirate” sites offering recent shows and movies, music, and software for free are sometimes too good to be true. In fact, they can infect your devices with viruses and compromise your privacy and safety.


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Comments

Catherine Coulson

Oh, how times have changed. Well, not really. But at least many parents today grew up with computers and at least have a little more common sense. According to https://itrate.co in the early 90's, the Michelangelo virus was the first computer virus that I remember gaining national media attention. My parents were so spooked, that they unplugged the computer (we had no modem at the time, so the entire computer), put it in a box, sealed the box with tape, and placed the whole thing in the attic for a month. They were under the (hilarious) impression that computer viruses were actual living viruses that somehow affected computers. Thankfully, by around 1998 or so, they had learned significantly more. Enough anyway, to assume that everyone on the internet who wasn’t a member of our immediate family was either a hacker or pedophile. Or both.

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