Avoid these careless mistakes to ensure your important data is always protected.
1. Hang out in public places and jump onto any network named “Free Wifi.” Sure it might be a fake hotspot created by that dude in the corner with the handlebar mustache, but what the heck, you gotta check your Facebook feed, right?
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2. Pay bills and check your investment account balances on an unsecured public network. I’m sure nobody else on the network is interested in your user name and password for your banking websites anyway.
3. Use the same password for every site you log into so you don’t have to worry about getting the right one for each site. When you use the same one for everything, it always works!
4. Be sure your password(s) are all super easy to remember, such as 1234, your birth date, or your dog’s name. Don’t bother incorporating numbers, capitalization and special characters — that just makes it harder to remember.
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5. Leave your laptop, Kindle, iPad or mobile phone in your car whenever you park it, preferably in a visible spot on the floor. Car windows are virtually unbreakable anyway right?
6. You know those emails that ask you to “confirm” your purchase, inform you that your account has been compromised or that you need to click this link to verify your account or change your password? Be sure to click on those links to find out what’s going on!
7. When your Facebook or Twitter friends express shock in a private message that says, “I can’t believe this photo of you!” click that link to see who’s besmirching your good name!
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Surely you aren’t doing any of the above, but if you are, it’s easy enough to stop that bad habit. The truth is if someone wants your information badly enough, he may be able to get it, but why give him any additional ammunition to use against you? Taking steps to create layers of difficulty for potential hackers is simple.
Protect your personal information and ensure identity protection by creating strong, varying passwords that incorporate capital and lowercase letters, numbers and special characters when possible. For additional security use a good antivirus, turn on your firewall and never leave your mobile devices unattended in your car or in a public place. Unless you know a person and are expecting an attachment, don’t click to open it and don’t click links embedded in emails. Be smart and savvy when it comes to email links and attachments too.
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