10 Tips for your Internet SafetyHow can you protect yourself? The following 10 tips are fast, easy and don't take long to implement, but offer safe surfing and living on the Internet
1) Do not store any access data or passwords in your Internet browser
Even browsers have weak points, which are attacked by cyber criminals – and in no time the stored data are stolen and sold on the Internet.
2) Passwords should not be too simple and must be changed on a regular basis
Passwords such as date of birth, names of children and similar easily researchable words are not recommended. A password should be a combination of numbers, special characters and letters in upper and lower case.
3) Do not follow links in "accidentally" received emails or from supposedly known senders
It could be a phishing attempt which leads to a counterfeit website. The counterfeit pages are designed so professionally that they can hardly be distinguished from the real ones. Better to: Enter the website by hand and keep an eye on the Internet address.
4) When shopping and banking online, make sure that the data is transmitted in encrypted form
A secure online connection is signalled by having 'https' (hypertext transfer protocol secure) in the Internet address. When shopping online, data should always be transmitted via a secure server such as "SSL" (Secure Sockets Layer).
5) Do not surf the Net as administrator; instead create a dummy user
In the control panel simply select the option 'user accounts' and create a new account – this only takes one minute.
6) Regularly check the data on the computer and make backups
A lot of personal and financial data are stored on the computer. Do all these data really need to be present at all times? Archive these data once, or better twice on DVD, external hard drive or memory card - so a backup is made at the same time. Then delete as much data as possible from the computer: After all, where there is no data, none can be stolen.
7) In order to keep software and Internet browsers current, always download the updates on a regular basis
The Internet continues to develop at a fast pace, with new threats emerging. Regularly updating programs and operating systems closes the holes that malicious code can slip through.
8) Even in social networking sites you have to be careful
After all, you wouldn't accept a stranger on the street as your "new friend" either. Always make a conscious decision on who you allow to access which private data. Next time you log in, simply check whether you don't have a bit too much data in public view.
9) Careful with "public" computers - in Internet cafes, bars, hotels or at the airport
Here it is best not to enter personal data such as account numbers, passwords or PINs. The data could soon end up in the wrong hands. So best to avoid online banking! And: If you take your laptop abroad, don't forget its "vaccination". Security software, firewalls etc should always be up to date.
10) With the present threat status it is essential to have a current Internet security software program installed
This should include the following features: Protection against viruses, phishing, pharming, spam, bots, spyware and rootkits, as well as a firewall, browser protection and proactive, behaviour-based detection. Norton Internet Security offers these features. It also allows you to administer various online identities.