As a computer user, you might not be that familiar with all the threats that are ready to pounce on your device and cause you harm. Sometimes, even veteran tech-savvy people might be too surprised and fail to react to certain malware, viruses, and other threats.
Right now, it is recommended to take a proactive approach and create a solid cybersecurity strategy that you utilize while using a computer. Following recognized security practices should be enough to prevent threats or minimize the odds of encountering them.
This article will give you seven ideas on developing such a strategy. Keep in mind that the more of the ideas you implement, the more secure your computer will be.
Avoid Sharing Personal Information
For starters, do not share personal information. A good example of this is a wifi password. You might have someone come over and ask you for the password to access the internet on their smartphone.
Keep in mind that one can access this information without your knowledge. For instance, if you have a MacBook, a person might use the device to get wifi password from mac themselves without your knowledge.
Another example of personal information sharing is when you post pictures on social media. You might not pay enough attention and fail to notice that there is sensitive information in a picture, such as someone’s phone number or an email address.
These things might not seem like a big deal, but exposing details is the first step that leads to someone taking advantage of such information and attacking you.
Use a Virtual Private Network
A virtual private network should be one of the cornerstones of a secure computer. If you are spending a lot of time online, you may want to encrypt your data and even change your location and IP address.
Overall, your home network should be secure so long as you have a reliable ISP. However, the same cannot be said about the public internet that usually lacks security.
Since a decent virtual private network service costs a couple of dollars a month, it should not be too troublesome to invest some money and protect your computer with the service.
Check Available Security Tools
It would be unwise not to take advantage of available security tools. Considering the available checklist of such tools, antivirus software is the first thing that comes to mind. You need to have a tool that is running in the background and deleting detected malware and other threats.
A cleanup utility tool is worth a shout as well. You can install such software and use it to get rid of system clutter. Caches, extensions, old backups, and other junk data. Eliminating such files decreases the odds of them getting infected with a virus and causing problems to the computer’s security.
Get in the Habit of Backing Up Data
As a precaution, you should get in the habit of backing up computer data. In case it gets wiped, you will have a copy that you can use to restore lost files.
Usually, people choose between cloud storage and external HDDs or USB flash sticks to back up files. Go with the method that you find the most suitable. Also, if you wish, you can create data copies on both clouds and an external storage device for extra safety.
Take Care of Old Hardware
Keep in mind that you should not get rid of old hardware without properly taking care of it first. For instance, you might have an outdated HDD that stopped working or is still functioning, and you plan to sell it to another computer user.
Sure, the odds of a random person bothering to restore deleted files on your drive are relatively low, but it is better to be safe than sorry. If you are not planning to destroy old hardware, make sure to purge any traces of yourself so that other parties have no chance of restoring information that could be used against you.
Be Smart When Surfing the Web
Being smart about using the internet is one of the traits that come with experience. You want to pay attention to what you do and avoid potential threats.
Take emails, for example. You may receive various offers that ask you to visit a link or download an email attachment. Such instances scream suspicious messages and should be ignored.
If you receive a file from someone you know, make sure that it is safe to download. In some cases, even reliable antivirus software might not be enough to prevent malware and other threats.
Keep Up With Cybersecurity News
The last bit of advice is about knowing what is happening in the cybersecurity world. Spend some of your time reading various articles or listening to podcasts about the most recent threats and ways to counter them. Staying ahead will give you an advantage because you will know how to react and solve a cybersecurity problem before it gets out of hand.