TIM DREW: Take some simple steps to keep yourself safe online

Tim Drew
Tim Drew

This week is Get Safe Online week, in which Get Safe Online, a government-backed, not-for-profit organisation, seeks to demonstrate how sophisticated cyber-criminals have become, and how they use the data they obtain to target their intended victims.

Get Safe Online works closely with law enforcement agencies in support of their outreach activity, internal awareness and customer online safety.

We can all take simple steps to protect ourselves, such as using strong passwords across all our devices, being careful when clicking on links/opening emails from strangers, and trusting our instinct – if something feels suspicious, then it probably is!

However, many individuals – myself included – and businesses have not been taking sufficient precautions in order to keep themselves safe online.

Many still have just one password for multiple online accounts, do not use security software, do not regularly update their operating systems, never update their social media privacy settings or perform regular backups.

Some do not even change their password when advised so to after a website with which they have an account suffers from a data breach.

Get Safe Online’s website – www.getsafeonline.org – is a valuable resource with practical advice on how to protect yourself, your computers and mobile devices and your business against fraud, identity theft, viruses and other problems encountered online.

It contains guidance on many other related subjects too, including on how to perform backups and how to avoid theft or loss of your computer, tablet or smartphone. Every relevant topic is included, including safe online shopping, gaming and dating, so this represents a good opportunity to increase your awareness of the risks that lurk on the web – and, what is more, free expert advice is available.

The site also keeps you in touch with news, tips and stories from around the world, so make good use of it to keep the crooks at bay.

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