Tips to Protect Your Privacy Online
From massive data breaches to online tracking, it is harder than ever to live a “Private” online life. In today’s digital world, managing your online identity and protecting your privacy is more important than ever. With the constant threat of identity theft and data breaches, roaming around, it is crucial to take steps to safeguard your personal information. But with a few steps, you can easily protect your privacy and keep your identity secure, and reduce the amount of data companies collect about you online. In this article, we have discussed a few tips to manage your identity and protect your privacy online.
What is Online Privacy?
Let me guess this is not the first time you have heard about online privacy. Privacy has become the top concern for governments and tech giants, with the two often going head to head on what it means and how to protect it.
Online privacy is about protecting your right to keep private information to yourself. Internet privacy and internet security are different but closely related to each other. Privacy usually deals with legal data collection, while cybersecurity focuses on illegal data collection. By taking simple steps you can eventually protect both, privacy and security.
How Do You Protect Your Privacy online?
- Use of a more secure search engine.
To Protect your privacy online, most users prefer to choose one web browser over another because of certain features or simply out of familiarity. But, are you sure your browser is safe to use? There is no guarantee your choice is up to snuff when it comes to security. Even if you are a person who is super conscious about everything you do online, there isn’t always a clear option for browsers. If you are in the market for a new browser, check reviews and read about security features before you switch. Trying out multiple browsers is a good way to compare interfaces and features for short periods while you decide which will be your go-to browser.
- Use of strong, unique passwords
It’s not something new that you have heard, but using unique passwords will take you a long way. One of the simplest but most effective ways to Protect privacy online is to use strong, unique passwords for all your accounts. Avoid using easily guessable passwords like “123456”, which is also the most used password around the world. Passwords should be unique to the users only and try using passwords that use a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. You can also use a password manager to generate and store strong passwords for you.
- Try enabling two-factor authentication
One of the best tips to Manage Your Identity is two-factor authentication (2FA). Two-factor authentication (2FA) adds an extra layer of security to your online accounts by requiring a second form of identification, which is usually a code sent to your phone number or email id. Enabling Two-factor authentication can prevent unauthorized access to your accounts, even if unfortunately someone manages to get hold of your password.
- Double-check any unfamiliar links
One of the ways to Protect your privacy online is to never trust any link online. Take your time to assess and double-check the links before you click on them. It is also a great way to protect your device because you will reduce its exposure to viruses and malware.
Clicking on a link does not always mean you become an immediate victim of identity theft but it surely does increase the risk around it. Clicking a few wrong links may result in it extracting extra information like your credit card number with a layout that resembles a trusted brand, while other links may directly result in the transfer of malware that can corrupt your data.
- Be Cautious of Usage of public Wi-Fi
Who does not like free stuff? From money, and food to even wifi, we all love to use free items. Public Wi-fi networks can surely be convenient, but they can also be a security risk. Hackers know we all won’t reject using free public wifi and they take advantage of this and can easily intercept data transmitted over these networks, so it's best to avoid using them for sensitive activities like online banking. If you need to use public Wi-Fi, use a virtual private network (VPN) to encrypt your traffic and protect your privacy.
- Be Cautious of Phishing scams
Phishing scams are common tactics used by hackers to steal your personal information. This involves an email or a message that appears to be from a legitimate source, such as from banks related to you, companies you might have applied for, or even social media platforms. They ask you to click on a link or provide personal information. Always be aware of unsolicited messages and double-check the sender and website before providing any information.
- Delete Apps that are not in Use
One of the other Tips to Manage Your Identity is to delete Apps that are not in use. It is always best to delete any old apps you no longer use, from your smartphones and web browsers. Deleting old apps not only frees up your hard drive space but also protects you against security flaws. Few of the apps may have a shelf life, which means they no longer receive any updates from the developers. This also means they are no longer protected against the latest threats, which may impact you if you have an older app.