People might assume their personal information is personal. However, you’d be surprised how much information relating to you can be found online. Much of this has been gathered without you knowing and without your consent.
A prime example of this being pipl.com which is just one area where information is stored and available for any member of the public to view.
It might seem this is some sort of hacker database, but it is very far from it and is very similar to what marketing companies seek to bombard you with personalized ads.
There are a few simple things you can do to protect yourself from legitimate sources from stealing your data, and the ones you can’t see who are the hackers.
Protect Everything with Passwords
It might not seem you need to password protect your home devices, but all digital devices should have password protection in force. This includes anything which can connect to the internet. Computers, Macs, tablets, and smartphones.
If any of these are lost or stolen, you can fall victim to information being leaked, and hackers are waiting to scoop it up and take advantage.
Online passwords are also required in an area where you make transactions. The same password shouldn’t be used for more than one account, and they should be strong passwords. Two-factor authentication should also be used if available.
Device wise, your router is a prime target so changing the password on this can help secure all your connected devices.
Virus Free Equipment
If your computer becomes infected by viruses or malware, hackers can dig through personal information to steal your identity, and they might lock your files and ask for a ransom to get them back (Ransomware).
Make sure your system is up to date, andyou have a good antivirus product in position. These can help prevent malware and key loggers being installed which pass info back to a hacker who can then see everything you do.
• Enable automatic update for Windows.
• MacOS automatically checks for updates by default
• Android will notify you of updates, but you’ll need to install them manually
• iOS nags you about updates, so there’s no chance you are likely to miss them
Securing Your Browser
The most common way a person connects online is through the browser. Many updated ones now incorporate security features to prevent malicious sites from being visited, but there is more thatyou can do.
Private browsing(incognito mode) can also help prevent stolen information because all your history will be deleted when you have finished with your browser.
On top of this,you can make use of add-ons or extensions which boost security functionality. Disconnect can be installed on many browsers and stops any tracking sites from monitoring where you visit.
On top of this,you can install a free ad-blocker which prevents adverts from popping up and annoying you and any chance of you clicking on the wrong thing. uBlock Origin is one of the most popular for this.
Protect Your Connection with a VPN
A lot of what you can do to prevent hackers from stealing data doesn’t stop them from getting into your system.
This is the beauty of a VPN. They make your connection invisible to the outside world. Even if they attempt to break into your home network, they will find it difficult because of the high encryption which is used.
A top VPN service can be installed on your home router so all your devices will be protected. All of these will be hidden, and no one can associate your connection to you.
These also come in handy with ISP’s tracking what you visitand keeping this data.
This is the number one way of securing your devices from hackers.
Social Media Sharing
It might be you are chatting away with friends and saying you’re going on vacation or away for the weekend. Even the pictures you post can give more than enough information to hackers.
All of your social media accounts should be locked down, and you should only share with people you know. This should hopefully protect you a little from the likes of the Facebook and Cambridge Analytica scandal a while ago.
Social media sites portray themselves as places to chat, but they are in fact spaces to generate money from advertising.
These areas are straight forward for hackers to gain information because people are too willing to share details of their life with everyone they start chatting with.