Protecting Your Data From Hackers: A Short Guide

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Virtually everything you do online these days means some of your data is getting passed around. Whether it’s logging into your online bank account, responding to emails or creating an account with your favorite retailer, you give away bits of data, both large and small, every single day. While Internet security is more stringent than ever, criminals are always looking to get one step ahead, meaning it’s vital that you take steps to protect your data from hackers.

The good news is that there are some simple things you can do to protect your data, and you don’t have to be a computer genius to stay safe online. Below are some tips to protect your data from hackers and safeguard your personal information:

Be Aware

Just like in the real world, your travels on the web will be safer by simply being aware of where you are and what you’re doing. Hackers will employ all kinds of tactics to try and trick people into clicking on dangerous links or downloading malicious software.

To avoid this, make sure you know the sender of an email before clicking on any links contained within the message. Likewise, if a website does not have an SSL certificate (denoted by the “https” in the URL), consider avoiding filling out any forms on that site.

Utilize Ransomware Protection Tools

Remember that even if you know how to stay safe online, not everyone on your network may be on the same page. Unfortunately, all it takes is for one person to introduce ransomware or malware onto a network to compromise every device and account. Specialty ransomware protection software, like the cloud-based security solutions provided by Zscaler, is designed to stop these threats before they cause harm.

Change Your Passwords Often

It’s also a good idea to change your passwords often, and you shouldn’t use the same password for every account. Passwords should also include a mix of numbers, uppercase and lowercase letters, and punctuation when possible. You’re also encouraged to use passwords that do not contain common words or names. This will make your passwords hard to guess and harder to attack using hacking tools.

Install Updates Often

Finally, you can protect your data from hackers by updating your operating system software, web browser, email client, and any other web-connected programs you use. Updating often or as soon as an update is available can often provide protection through security patches that fix potential exploits found by the developer. Most operating systems and browsers automatically check for security updates upon starting up, so restarting your device daily can help to expedite the process.

Stay Ahead of the Curve

No matter what steps you take to protect your data from hackers, it’s a good idea to stay up to date with the latest Internet security trends. This doesn’t mean you have to become an IT expert, but browsing news about potential threats from time to time is a good idea. Technology is always evolving, but by staying informed, you stand a better chance to remain protected no matter what security threats pop up in the future.