4 Simple and Effective Ways To Stay Safe Online in the Digital Age
We are living in a time when the majority of us are constantly connected to the internet. Whether it is the smartphone in our pockets, the watch on our wrist or the laptop at the tips of our fingers, people are using the internet more often than at anytime in human history. We use it to keep up with the news, for entertainment purposes, to work, to study, to communicate with friends and family on social media, to shop, and if we are speaking honestly, for just about everything we do on a daily basis.
The opportunities and resources the internet provides us with is something we should never take for granted, and while we don’t want to dampen the mood, it also brings some dangers. We constantly hear campaigns warning us to be safe on the internet, and to make sure to always protect our private information, but many people are still left confused as to what exactly it is they should be doing to in order to do this.
In fact, people are often left with more questions than answers when they look into how to remain safe online. Individuals are left wondering, ‘What is a strong password?’, ‘What is a VPN?‘, ‘How do I know if a website is secure?’, ‘What information should I keep private?’ The list in truth is endless, and so, we decided to do something about it. Luckily for you, we have put this article together to provide you with four simple and effective ways to stay safe online in the digital age. So, without further ado, let’s get started…
1. Keep Your Private Information Private
Its the digital age, we are well aware that many of us will have certain information on the internet. Whether its your job history on a business or employment website, or a method of contact so people can get in touch with you on a social media site or via email, there is some information that is crucial to have online in order for you to have to best opportunity for success in life.
We are not suggesting you remove information that is considered vital, however, it is highly recommended that you do not publicly publish your home address or your current relationship status for example. Our rule of thumb is to ask yourself if what you are publishing or posting is need to know information. If not, then its always better to leave it to the side.
2. Use a VPN
A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, is one of the best tools available to keep yourself safe online. It is easy to use and has the ability to block and redirect your IP address to another address with the help of an encrypted connection. As a result, all of your real private information is hidden, which keeps your private information private, and safeguards you against the threat of hackers.
There are numerous VPNs available, including the Surfshark VPN, which will protect your online activities on all of your devices and allow you to once again surf the net in peace.
3. Safe Browsing Practices
While it is unfortunate to think, always be aware that there are cybercriminals with the sole intention of tricking you into clicking the wrong link. Whether it is via an email, an ad banner, or a pop-up advertisement on the wrong website, you are one click away from giving away your private information away and/or infecting your device with malware.
Due to the fact that a large proportion of us use the internet everyday, it is easy to forget this, so we recommend creating some sort of reminder for yourself and enforcing the motto of ‘better safe than sorry’. And of course, always be sure to double check that your anti-virus software is active and up to date.
4. Use a Variety of Strong Passwords
While this might sound obvious to many of you, you might be shocked to learn just how many people not only use weak passwords, but use the same password for all of their accounts and devices.
A strong password will be long, contain both upper-case and lower-case letters, numbers and a special character. Make sure that you have a unique password for all of your accounts and never reveal them to anyone. In addition, we also recommend changing them every so often to ensure that your accounts remain safe.
The Bottom Line
You wouldn’t leave your door at home open, and you should treat your private information online with just as much care. If you follow these simple and effective suggestions, you can rest assured that you are putting yourself in a much safer position online.