People have been told time and time again to do whatever it takes to keep their personal information private while using computers. And yet, the number of identity theft cases doubled between 2019 and 2020.
What does this tell us? Well, for one, it indicates that people still aren’t taking computer security seriously enough. It seems as though they’re doing things that allow their personal information to fall into the wrong hands while online.
It also indicates that people might just not get the picture yet when it comes to keeping a computer secure. They might need a refresher on digital safety and a few of the best computer security tips around.
Today, we’re going to talk about some of the ways in which you can keep your personal information private while you’re on your home computer. It should make it possible for you to put a much bigger emphasis on computer security from now on.
Create Strong (and Unique!) Passwords for Everything on Your Computer
From the second that you first sit down at your computer, you’re going to be asked to put in one password after another. You’ll usually have to enter a password just to turn your computer on. You’ll also have to enter one to:
- Check your email
- Sign in to your music streaming service
- Get access to your social media accounts
- Use your bank’s online banking options
- And more!
Because you’re going to have to enter your password so many times, you might be tempted to make your passwords easy to remember. You also might be tempted to simply use the same password over and over again.
These are both very bad ideas! All of your passwords should be strong and unique. It’ll prevent anyone out there from being able to guess them on the first, second, or third try.
Be Very Careful About What You Download on Your Computer
While you’re on your computer, there is a good chance that you’re going to download things at least every so often. It’s OK to download things to your computer, but you should be careful when downloading them.
You don’t ever want to download something that seems suspicious in the slightest. You could inadvertently download malware and/or viruses to your computer if you get into the habit of downloading everything that comes your way.
If someone sends you something to download, don’t be afraid to pick up the phone and call them to ask what they sent you prior to downloading it. It’s better to be safe than sorry in this day and age when it comes to computer security.
Try Not to Click on Any Links That You Don’t Recognize
In addition to steering clear of downloading things that don’t look legit, you should also shy away from clicking on any links that you might not recognize. This is another good way to accidentally allow malware and/or viruses to get access to your computer.
Even if someone that you know sends you a link in an email or through a direct message on social media, you shouldn’t click on it without asking them about it first. This is going to work wonders for your computer security.
Put Anti-Virus Software Onto Your Computer ASAP
No matter how diligent you are about not downloading things on your computer and not clicking on links you don’t recognize, you might still end up with malware and/or viruses on your computer. It’s why you should invest in anti-virus software.
This software will scan your computer every now and then to see if it can find any signs of malware and/or viruses. If it does, it’ll stop them from wreaking havoc on your computer system and prevent anyone from being to gain access to your computer so that they can steal your personal information.
Find the Most Secure Way to Store Personal Information on a Home Network Drive
Creating a home network drive that you and your family can use to save things so that you can access them from other computers and devices in your home is a great idea. Search “how to mapping network drives” to see how it’s done.
But at the same time, you’re going to want to make sure that those outside of your home won’t be able to access this shared network drive. If they do, they might be able to get their hands on your personal information. So you should make a strong push to lock down your network drive to keep other people off it.
Keep the Router That You Use to Connect to the Internet Password-Protected
If you use a router to connect to the internet, your neighbors might also be able to use it if it’s not password-protected. In fact, anyone within the general vicinity of your home will be able to use it, and in some cases, they might be able to hack into your computer through it.
For this reason, you should create a password for the router that you use to connect to the internet the second that you start using it. It’ll ensure that only you and your family can utilize the router to get online.
Avoid Oversharing When You Talk About Different Aspects of Your Life on Social Media
Social media is a great tool for those who want to let family members and friends know what they have going on in their lives. But remember: It’s not just going to be your family members and friends who can see your social media posts. Unless you go out of your way to make your posts private, other people will be able to see them, too.
And if you tend to overshare when you talk about different aspects of your life on social media, that alone could lead to your personal information getting out there in the world. Be cognizant of this and try not to share too much on social media if you can avoid it.
Start Taking Computer Security More Seriously to Keep Your Personal Information Private
The last thing that you want to do is let your personal information become public while you’re using your home computer. It could compromise everything from your bank accounts to your reputation within your community, depending on what you keep on your computer.
You can keep your personal information private by putting the computer security tips listed here to the test. They should make you feel so much safer when you’re using your computer at home.
Find more tips on keeping a computer secure by browsing through the other informative articles found on our blog.