We tend to put far too much trust in the Internet and other people online, but the simple truth is, there are lots of dishonest, unethical, and just plain creepy people out there who take advantage of those of us who just want to share photos of our kids or have a conversation! We here at JupiterTechs feel this is a really important topic to keep in the forefront of everyone’s mind, so please check out these quick tips and reminders and share them with your friends:
1) Be very careful about sharing your personal information, especially your cell phone number, your address, your full name, your financial information. Sites like Craigslist are great for buying, selling, and jobs but you should never give personal info to someone you don’t know.
2) When shopping or donating money online, make sure you see a little “lock” or “padlock” icon and make sure the web address says “https” instead of just “http.” Even then, be wary of shopping on a site that isn’t well-known and that doesn’t have clear return and security policies.
3) One website recommends that, when you’re using a public wireless network, you turn off “file sharing” and “network discovery.” How? The easiest way is to search your computer’s operating system on Google, along with “turn off file sharing and network discovery,” to find instructions.
4) Another important reminder from WikiHow: “Keep your eyes peeled for online scams. Beware of spoof email claiming to be from eBay, PayPal, or a bank or a company you trust asking for personal or sensitive information. This is called phishing. The e-mail may inform you that there is a problem with your account/password. There may be a link to click inside. Forward any of these e-mails to the company it claims to be sent from. They will confirm whether the e-mail you received was real or not. Also, bear in mind that e-mail programs like Yahoo!, MSN, Hotmail and Gmail will never ask you for your e-mail password. Dont fall for it.”
5) Never open a link or attachment from an email address you don’t know.
6) Use creative passwords, involving non-alphabetic characters and numbers, and use a different password for each website or account. Try using numbers to stand in for letters, such as 3 for E, 5 for S, zero for O, and 1 for lowercase L. Adding an * or # can help too.
7) Purchase and use a reliable, reputable anti-virus software – ask us and we can recommend one for you.
8) Install firewalls if your computer is ever used by young people or children in order to prevent them from reaching certain websites and to prevent hackers from reaching you.
9) Keep your privacy settings HIGH, especially on social media sites like Facebook. Make sure that the photos and personal information you share in status updates are only visible to “friends,” not by the general public.
Check out this website for more helpful info, and please feel free to ask us any questions – we’re here to help keep you safe!