Starting your journey to become cyber safe can be easier than you may think – and you don’t need to be a computer whiz to start securing your digital life. Everyone connects online in different ways, and you should engage online in a safe way to make sure your data is protected. Whether you’re online for most of the day or only for five minutes to check your email, good cyber security is crucial for all.
It’s important to go at your own pace and to be comfortable with your online activity, and Get Cyber Safe is always here to help. Here are a few ways that you can start making cyber security a part of your digital life and securing your personal data online.
Manage your accounts
Whatever you do online, you most likely had to set up an account at some point. Whether it’s email, social media or a subscription service, your accounts often contain sensitive data like financial information or your home address. These accounts need to be managed and secured. One important element is to have a strong and unique password or passphrase on each of your accounts, and never share them with anyone. This will help protect your accounts from cyber criminals.
If you are finding it hard to keep your passwords organized, try a password manager. A password manager not only helps organize them, but also makes it easier for you to use complex and unique passwords for each of your accounts. You should also enable multi-factor authentication (MFA) on any devices and accounts that allow it. Using tools like MFA and password managers are steps that don’t take much time on your end but can make it much harder for a cyber criminal to compromise your accounts.
Stay alert for scams
When it comes to cyber security, prevention is key. It’s much less time-consuming to watch out for scams like phishing than it is to recover stolen data or repair a virus infected device.
Whether it’s emails, pop-up ads, social media posts - scammers will try all sorts of methods when it comes to stealing your digital identity. That’s why it’s important to stay alert when you’re online and watch out for red flags.
Keep an eye out for any links or attachments that seem off, whether in an email or on a website. If you ever think something might not be real, take the time to confirm before proceeding any further. Many websites have ways to report scams you encounter.
It’s also a good idea to check the news as they will often report on popular scams and how to avoid them. It’s much easier to secure your digital life and protect your identity by staying alert during your activities online. If you do encounter a scam, you can report it to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.
Let your devices help
You don’t have to do it alone when it comes to getting cyber safe. There are some steps you can take to get your devices working with you. Installing a reputable anti-virus software works as a last defence against viruses like malware trying to infect your computer. Even if you’re staying alert and not clicking on any malicious links, a virus may still get through. Anti-virus software scans your computer for these threats and makes sure nothing slips through the cracks.
You should also update your software as soon as new updates are available. A great way to do this is to enable automatic updates for all your devices. This takes away the stress of remembering to update manually and eliminates those annoying pop-up reminders. If you do these two things, installing anti-virus software and enabling auto-updates, your devices can help you secure your online life.
No matter how much time you spend online, there are things you can do, like managing your accounts, staying alert and using your devices to help, that make securing your digital life easier than you think.