The challenge of keeping your personal information private and protected has never been more challenging than it is today. Last year alone, major data breaches at Yahoo, Equifax, and Uber reinforced just how much consumers have a right to be concerned. Marketers also continue to find more sophisticated ways of intruding on your digital privacy, collecting your personal data for monetary gains as you surf the web. Here are five important things that you should quit doing right now to better protect your digital privacy.
Stop Clicking on Unfamiliar Links and Attachment
When it comes to phishing attacks, the general goal is to get you to download an attachment, or to click on a link. An attachment, or a link within an e-mail can be disguised malware that can infect your PC with a virus that is created to steal your personal information. Be cautious about clicking on links that you are suspicious of, that tend to redirect you to another site. Furthermore, not all emails from someone you know may have been sent by him or her, so it’s wise to ensure that the content of the email is not out of character for the sender.
Stop Using Weak Passwords
Data breaches are partly as a result of poor password habits, wherein, you use the same password for most accounts and weak passwords like ‘admin,’ “123,” or your kids’ names. There are certain passwords that are easy for humans and computers to guess, and you want to minimize that risk by creating strong, unique passwords to log into your accounts. Opt to use two-step authentication when signing into your accounts and do not use the same password for all your accounts.
Stop Completing Your Social Media Profile
Filling out your social media profile is leaving more personal information than you need to on a site that perhaps has its own privacy issues. The more you post about yourself online, the more accessible it is for people to obtain your personal data. It doesn’t hurt to leave your social media profile page bare. So avoid sharing things like your birth date, email address and phone number.
Stop Ignoring Software Updates
Software updates have a way of annoying you and changing features that you don’t want to be messed with, however, they serve an important function. When it comes to protecting your data, software updates are key in helping to protect your computer or phone from harmful viruses and malware. It’s important to keep your computer’s operating system, browser, and security software, like a vpn router software, up-to-date to avoid data breaches. A simple way to ensure this is to turn on automatic updates for your devices operating system and applications.
Stop Leaving Accounts Open
This is one that many are guilty of doing constantly. While it is certainly convenient not having to sign into an account every time, not logging out is not worth the headache of having your personal information stolen. So, sign out of Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, and any other account when you are done, especially if you are on a public computer, where someone can later use that computer and snoop on the information that you made available.
Protecting your digital privacy should be a priority. It is more important today than ever before. You can help to protect your digital privacy by not leaving your accounts open, quit using weak passwords, stop ignoring software updates, stop completing social media profiles and stop clicking on unfamiliar links.