One of the most important things you can do for your personal data security is to know your risks. This way, you can take steps to protect yourself.
There are many different ways that hackers might try to access your personal data. And since it’s often easy for them to do so, you must be careful online.
Protecting your personal information can be challenging. With so many apps, websites, and devices in our lives, it may seem like there’s no way to keep everything safe. But with proper education and steps taken, you can safeguard your data and live in peace without worrying about cyber threats.
Here are some of the best ways to help you securely manage your private data, using the latest available data privacy tools and methods.
What makes your data vulnerable?
There are numerous ways your data can fall into the wrong hands, and not all of them will be your fault. Any time you give access to any of your personal data to an outside party, that data can be exposed. While you can be the victim of a phishing scam or malware that hijacks your key entries, your information can also be stolen from a company you do business with.
While there isn’t much you can do to protect yourself from data breaches on high-profile companies, you can take the following measures below to protect yourself from other threats.
Use a password manager
There’s no such thing as a free lunch, as the old saying goes. With every website, app, and device you use, you’re granting access to that information. Having to memorize all the passwords you need to access these sites is extremely inconvenient, so many people choose to use a password manager vault to protect their data and personal identities.
A password manager isn’t just for storing passwords though. While having your passwords encrypted with the strongest methods available is always useful, so is having a strong, complex password – and that’s where password managers also help.
Because you don’t need to remember the passwords stored in a password manager, they can generate passwords for use with extremely complex combinations of characters, numbers, and letters.
Avoid online banking on public wifi networks
Public wifi networks pose a significant security risk when you’re passing sensitive information along the network. The data packets being transmitted from your device can be intercepted in a multitude of ways, and those packets can be stored in the hands of an attacker.
Hackers can also hijack a public wifi network, using site redirects to trick you into entering your information on a phishing website. For example, imagine you’re staying at a hotel with free wifi, and you want to just quickly check your bank balance. With a site redirect attack, when you try to access your bank’s official website, you are instead sent to a phishing site. This enables hackers to have their virtual feet in your shoes.
A private network is always the best choice for doing any kind of online financial activity.
Keep track of what’s going on in your online life
Your online privacy and security have to be constantly monitored and maintained in order to stay safe. When data breaches and hacking attempts happen, you’ll need to take action immediately in order to mitigate the potential damages.
For this reason, it’s a good idea to take advantage of security checkup tools. For example, if you store third-party account information under your Google Chrome account (a bad idea overall, but nonetheless), Google offers a Security Review tab that can alert you to password leaks and data breaches on websites you have accounts on.
It’s also a good idea to request your credit report for free once a year from each of the major credit bureaus, to make sure any suspicious activity is reported.
Basically, don’t wait until something happens to take action. Protecting yourself online means taking proactive measures and monitoring your identity, even when everything seems fine.
With these simple steps, you can stay safe online while using the technologies and services that are already available. Of course, it’s good to read up on how things work before you dive in.
However, because almost everyone’s online presence is tied to another, whether they like it or not, taking advantage of tools and security features available to you is always the best way to keep up to date.