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Friday, February 5, 2010

10 Tips for a Total Online Security

With the sudden rise in the Internet usage across the globe over the past few years, there has also been a rise in the amount of online scams and frauds. Today most of the Internet users are unaware of the most prevailing online threats which pose a real challenge for their safe Internet usage. As a result, Online Security has become a questionable factor for the most Internet users. However it is still possible to effectively combat online insecurity provided that the users are well aware of the common scams and frauds and know how to protect themselves. A study shows that over 91% of the Internet users are unaware of the online scams and are worried about their security. Well if you are one among those 91% then here is a list of 10 tips to ensure your total online security.
 
1. Always install a good antivirus software and keep it up-to-date. Also install a good anti-spyware to keep your PC away from spywares.
2. Always visit known and trusted websites. If you are about to visit an unknown website, ensure that you do not click on suspectable links and banners.
3. Perform a virus scan on the files/email attachments that you download before executing them.
4. Regularly Update your operating system and browser software. For a better security it is recommended that you surf the Internet through the latest version of your browser program.
5. Never share your password (email, bank logins etc.) with any one for any reason. Choose a strong password (A blend of alphanumeric+special symbols) and change it regularly, eg. every 3 months. Avoid using easy-to-guess passwords. (ex. pet’s name or kid’s name)
6. Always type the URL of the website in your browser’s address bar to enter the login pages. For ex. To login to your Gmail account type http://mail.google.com 
7. Before you enter your password on any login page, ensure that you see https instead of http. ex. https://mail.google.com instead of http://mail.google.com. HTTPS protocol implements SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) and provide better security than a normal HTTP.
8. Beware of phishing emails! Do not respond to any email that request you to update your login details by clicking on a link in the body of the email. Such links can lead to Fake Login Pages (Spoofed Pages).
9. Always hit the logout button to close your login session rather than abruptly terminating the browser window. And clear your web browser caches after every session to removethe temporary files stored in the memory and hard disk of your PC.
10. Avoid (Stop) using any public computers or computers in the Internet cafes to access any sensitive/confidential information. Also avoid such computers to login to your email/bank accounts. You cannot be sure if any spyware, keystroke-logger, password-sniffer and other malicious programs have not been installed on such a PC.

By following the above 10 tips your online security can be guaranteed upto 95%. I hope this will help my readers for keeping themselves safe from any of the online insecurities. Cheers! Pass your comments.

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