How to Keep Your Online Information Protected in 2021
Identity protection is probably more important now than it’s ever been. Since everyone is home and shopping mostly online, more cases of identity theft and fraud have been on the rise.
Scammers are creating social media posts and e-mails with fake information about COVID-19. They lead people to fraudulent investment sites, fake e-commerce sites and phony charity sites, among other things.
That’s why it can pay to learn ways to keep your online information protected going into 2021. Here’s how you can do it.
1. Secure Your Home Network
If you’re working from home, it’s especially important that you secure your home network. That way, it’s harder for hackers and scammers to gain access to your wireless network.
Use strong passwords and encryption to secure your home network. Changing your default administrator password can provide an added layer of protection.
WPA2 or WPA3 encryption makes it impossible for hackers to see any information you send over your wireless network.
2. Invest in Online Security Solutions
Investing in online identity theft protection like LifeLock can give you easy, convenient monitoring technology and alerts so you can ensure your information (and family) are protected while online.
With LifeLock, you’ll get Social Security number and credit alerts, lost wallet protection, reduced pre-approved credit card offers and black market web surveillance.
Choose between the standard, advantage and ultimate plus plans, depending on what level of protection you think you need.
3. Be Careful About Clicking Links
As mentioned earlier, scammers are everywhere (social media, e-mail, etc.), which means you need to be vigilant about the links you’re clicking. Especially when you open an e-mail or when you’re scrolling through social media.
Hover over links before you click on them to ensure the hyperlink is the same as the link-to address.
If someone you don’t know sends you an e-mail with any clickable links, don’t open them. You never know where they’re leading you and what those links could do to your computer.
4. Protect Yourself When Shopping Online
It’s extremely important that you find ways to stay safe when shopping online using credit or debit cards.
Only shop on sites you trust to avoid getting your credit or debit card number stolen.
You could also opt to use a disposable credit card when shopping online to avoid using your actual number.
Another thing you can do is check the URL to see if it uses “https://” instead of “http://”; the “s” indicates the website is secured.
Keeping Yourself Protected in 2021
Using the above tips, you can keep your online information protected going into 2021. Even though technology has advanced and provides unique and innovative ways for hackers to commit cybercrime, there are solutions to every problem.
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By putting the proper security measures in place before cybercrime takes place, you reduce the risk of being a victim.
Whether you secure your home network, get identity monitoring services, avoid clicking unknown links or mask your credit card number (or use a virtual card number), you’ll be in a much better position to keep your information protected in the New Year and beyond.
Do you have any more ideas on how to keep your online information protected?
Let me know, til then—cheers m’deres!
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Nancy Polanco is a freelance journalist, lifestyle content creator, and editor of Whispered Inspirations. She is a proud Mom to Gabby and Michaela and partner and best friend to Darasak. Having worked as part of a health care team for almost a decade, Nancy is happy to be back to her passion. She is a contributor to the Huffington Post, TODAY’s Parents, and an Oprah Magazine Brand Ambassador.