Online Safety

The internet is a staple in many people’s everyday lives providing information, services and entertainment but it is also full of risk without taking the proper precautions. Banking, shopping, and interacting online might expose your personal information.

Treat your personal information as you would treat your money—don’t leave it lying around for others to take. With your stolen identity, a person may access your bank account, obtain credit cards or loans in your name, or claim welfare benefits, and potentially ruin your credit rating.

Keep security software current

Having the latest security software, web browser, and operating system are the best defenses against viruses, malware, and other online threats.

Automate software updates

Many software programs will automatically connect and update to defend against known risks. Turn on automatic updates if that’s an available option.

Protect all devices that connect to the Internet

Along with computers, smart phones, gaming systems, and other web-enabled devices also need protection from viruses and malware.

Plug & scan

“USBs” and other external devices can be infected by viruses and malware. Use your security software to scan them.

Secure your accounts

Ask for protection beyond passwords. Many account providers now offer additional ways for you verify who you are before you conduct business on that site.

Make passwords long and strong

Combine capital and lowercase letters with numbers and symbols to create a more secure password.

Unique account, unique password

Separate passwords for every account helps to thwart cybercriminals.

Write it down and keep it safe

Everyone can forget a password. Keep a list that’s stored in a safe, secure place away from your computer.

Own your online presence

When available, set the privacy and security settings on websites to your comfort level for information sharing. It’s OK to limit who you share information with.

Connect With Care

When in doubt, throw it out: Links in email, tweets, posts, and online advertising are often the way cybercriminals compromise your computer. If it looks suspicious, even if you know the source, it’s best to delete or if appropriate, mark as junk email.

Get savvy about Wi-Fi hotspots

Limit the type of business you conduct and adjust the security settings on your device to limit who can access your machine.

Protect your $$$

When banking and shopping, check to be sure the sites is security enabled. Look for web addresses with “https://” or “shttp://”, which means the site takes extra measures to help secure your information. “http://” is not secure.

Stay current

Check trusted websites for the latest information, and share with friends, family, and colleagues and encourage them to be web wise.

Think before you act

Be wary of communications that implores you to act immediately, offers something that sounds too good to be true, or asks for personal information.

Back it up

Protect your valuable work, music, photos, and other digital information by making an electronic copy and storing it safely.