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Are You Secure Online?

Are You Secure Online?

Today more people spend more time online than ever before. This includes new uses for business, entertainment, media consumption, communication and more. However, how safe are we on the web? Here are a few ways you can stay secure online… 
You are at Risk. Many people think Internet security only matters for people in high-up companies with millions dollars of assets. The contrary is actually true. Hackers target any and every person, from average to wealthy. Many groups will target people who believe they are safe since they do not keep all their information online. Even if you keep your personal information off the web, it is always a good idea to make strong passwords including lower and uppercase letters, numbers and symbols. Never use the same password for multiple accounts. If a hacker can get into one account with an identical password to others, they can use it to access even more of your information. 
Check your Browsing History. When online, it is good practice to check your browsing history as well as recent downloads. If any seem suspicious, look into what might have been accessed. If you discover a possibly malicious download, it can be removed by going to Change or Remove a Program through the Windows button. If you are unsure of which is bad, simply google the program or the manufacturer of that program to check the validity of its placement.
Use browser extensions wisely. While online, it is useful to use web browser extensions like AdGuard or NoScript. These browser extensions are very useful because they can notify you if an unwanted program is running in the background; they can also block harmful ads from popping up. An extension like Ghostery lets the user detect and control JavaScript trackers. This can be useful in making sure that only the programs you want running are.
The most important thing to remember when surfing the web is to think before you click. The easiest way for a hacker to get information is by having an ad pop up and waiting for you to accidently click on it. This can allow programs to start downloading without you even realizing it. With anything that you do download on purpose, be sure to read everything in case the maker threw in an unwanted extension of some kind. 
James McKinley
Engineering Pathway student
Robert Turner College and Career High School
Intern, UHCL-Cyber Security Institute

  • Cyber Security Institute

    Phone: 281-283-3808

    Delta Building, 147
    2700 Bay Area Blvd, Box 40
    Houston, TX 77058-1002