1. Giving Out Too Much Information on Social Media
Almost everyone shares a lot of personal information on social media. They share their ideas, thoughts, life events, and more online. Many find like-minded individuals by sharing such thoughts, but they fail to remember that sharing too much information is likely to make them victims of identity theft.
When you share sensitive personal details on social media, you will need to remember that your profile has Personally Identifiable Information (PII). Cybercriminals can use the details like your contact number, date of birth, race, nationality, address, etc., to launch certain attacks and scams.
To make sure your personal data does not fall into the hands of scammers and hackers, you just have to filter your posts. You must clear your profile bio and ensure that too much personal information isn’t available, turn off GPS, keep your current location hidden, and post once in a while and not too often. Doing all this will help you protect your social media account and personal information.
2. Not Limiting Access to Important Files
In order to prevent data breaches, it is crucial to regulate who has access to your data. In most cases, identity theft, fraud, data theft, and loss of confidentiality happen as a result of unauthorized access.
Many fail to understand the importance of access control and setting permissions. Failure to set permissions could result in account takeovers. To avoid becoming a victim of identity theft and other forms of fraud, make sure to set your documents to private and grant access to files only to authorized users. Be it work-related files or your personal documents, set them to private by default.
3. Relying on Free VPN Service Providers
While there are hundreds of free and premium VPN services in the market, many choose to go with free services thinking that those free VPN services will encrypt their data and keep them secure online. However, that is not true, as free VPN services are not as secure as premium ones like NordVPN, Surfshark VPN, ExpressVPN, and more.
Though many believe free services are cost-efficient, they need to remember that those services have security risks. They might not offer strong encryption, and their encryption keys can be weaker. Free VPN services might not encrypt data and hide their users’ online identities effectively. Hackers can easily hack into your network and track your online activities.
It is wise to stay away from shady, free VPN services to stay secure. There are VPN services like Atlas VPN that offer a free plan in addition to its premium subscription plans. Likewise, you can go for VPNs like Surfshark VPN that offer solid security features at an affordable price.
4. Not Backing Up Crucial Files
If you are someone who ignores backups, remember that it is one of the security mistakes you will need to avoid to keep your data secure. Many do not back up their crucial files as they consider it a tedious process. However, it is wise to spend a few minutes to back up important files.
Doing so will help combat cybersecurity threats like ransomware attacks, data breaches, and more. This applies to personal files and work files, as well. In case of a data breach or data loss, backups will help restore important files. If you find it hard to back up files manually, you can go for backup software programs, using which you can automatically back up your files.
5. Using Public WiFi
Never use public WiFi networks as such networks are not secure. Be it for work or to access your personal information, do not use public WiFi networks, as hackers can easily track your online activities and also steal sensitive data when you connect to an insecure public WiFi network.
Hackers can steal your passwords, bank account information, and more when you connect to one such network. Instead, you can use your mobile network to check your personal information or pay your bills while you travel. Otherwise, wait until you return home and access your personal information securely from your home.
Tips for Cyber Hygiene
You can maintain good cyber hygiene by taking certain simple steps regularly. Limiting the usage of public WiFi networks, updating software whenever there is an update, backing up your data, and setting strong passwords are a few things you will need to do in order to maintain good cyber hygiene. Make changes to the way you use the internet and focus on security and privacy. Learn to identify spammy links and make sure you never click on one such link you receive via SMS or email.
It is crucial to secure your personal data and your work data, as well. Avoid accessing your work-related files or documents from your personal computer. Another best practice to stay secure and anonymous online is to use a trustworthy VPN. This way, you can ensure that your online traffic is encrypted and private.
Our Top VPN Recommendations for Online Security
NordVPN is the best overall VPN for online security and privacy. It comes with a suite of security features like double VPN, onion over VPN, kill switch, 256-bit encryption, split tunneling, private DNS, DNS leak protection, and more. This premium VPN lets users test its services for free, as a result of which it offers a money-back guarantee. Check out our in-depth review of NordVPN to learn more.
Surfshark VPN is the best budget-friendly VPN service with solid security features for online security and anonymity. At a pocket-friendly price, this VPN offers all the top VPN security features and some unique features like Camouflage mode, Bypasser, MultiHop, and more. The best thing about this VPN is that it allows users to secure all their devices with just one subscription. Head to our detailed Surfshark VPN review to know more about its pricing, free trial, and other security features.
ExpressVPN is the fastest VPN with a vast server network and excellent security features. This VPN is popular among people looking for super-fast speeds for streaming, gaming, and torrenting due to its speeds. It is a bit on the expensive side, but it offers unmatched speeds and offers all the top VPN security features. Most of all it is also a RAM-based VPN similar to the VPNs listed above. Know more about this fastest VPN by heading to our extensive ExpressVPN review.