Effective ways to protect your personal information online

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Without even realizing it, many of us fail to properly protect our personal information on the web. With cybercriminals working tirelessly to obtain sensitive data, no one can afford to treat safeguarding personal info as an afterthought. Although the consequences of having one’s financials, social security number, or other confidential information compromised can be devastating. Keeping this data out of the wrong hands doesn’t have to be an uphill battle.

Anyone looking to protect their personal information online, and keep cybercriminals at bay can benefit from the following measures:

Invest in ID security software

In many cases, people don’t immediately realize when their personal data has been compromised. It isn’t until they come across fraudulent credit card charges, bank withdrawals or other unsavory consequences that the data theft becomes apparent. When it comes to information theft, the timeliness of one’s response can make a tremendous amount of difference. The faster you’re able to nip this problem in the bud, the less severe its effects are likely to be.

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That being the case, cutting-edge ID security software represents a sound investment. The right software will instantly alert you whenever stolen personal data is used for malicious purposes, enabling you to immediately get on top of the problem and minimize any damage. If you’re shopping around for new security software or are looking to upgrade a less-than-effective program, check out Trend Micro ID Security.

Create strong passwords and keep them private

If online security is important to you, password protection should be among your foremost priorities. For maximum effectiveness, you’ll need to create distinct passwords for your various online accounts. While it may be tempting to use the password for every account. This ensures that data thieves only need to obtain one password to have them all. When crafting effective passwords, abstain from using common expressions and number combinations. Instead, opt for full-on nonsense.

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You can stay ahead of cybercriminals by changing your passwords on a semi-regular basis. Furthermore, in addition to password-protecting your accounts, you should enable password protection for your home network and every internet-capable device you own.

Stay off of public Wi-Fi

It can’t be denied that public Wi-Fi serves an important purpose. In fact, it’s the only internet access some people have. However, using public Wi-Fi to send or share personal information can prove disastrous. Since anyone can access public networks, they often serve as playgrounds for eager cybercriminals. If you need to quickly Google something or get directions, public Wi-Fi should be able to accommodate you. But take care to abstain from entering any passwords or accessing sensitive documents while using it.

If you have no choice but to utilize public Wi-Fi, make sure to use a virtual private network (VPN). A VPN essentially creates a private network using a public network’s connection, thereby providing public Wi-Fi users with an added layer of security. Furthermore, most subscription-based VPNs are affordable on virtually any budget.

So, if you access public Wi-Fi with any degree of regularity, a good VPN is a worthwhile investment. If you’re completely cash-strapped, you may want to consider using a free VPN. These generally don’t offer the same level of protection as their subscription-based contemporaries, but they’re better than nothing.

Limit what you share on social media

With Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram becoming staples of most people’s daily lives, we’re truly living in the age of social media. While popular social platforms can be great places to make new friends and connect with your crew, it’s important to be mindful of oversharing. Revealing too much about yourself, your location, or your place of employment can make you a target for information thieves and online predators.

With this in mind, put genuine thought into every post you share. And consider potential ramifications before deciding to post something. For added security, you may also want to consider making your various accounts private.

With data theft at all-time highs, getting serious about cybersecurity is in everyone’s best interest. Even if you think you’re taking all the right precautions, there’s a good chance a few important details have been overlooked.

However, while having your personal info compromised can be downright disastrous, nipping this problem in the bud can be relatively easy – provided, of course, you’re armed with the right tools. If thwarting data theft efforts is among your foremost priorities, the measures discussed above are sure to come in handy.

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