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How To Keep Your Home & Devices Secure

Rinky Dink Inc

Many people are concerned with using the Internet due to the increase in reports of hacking and leaks of personal information. For example, Tesco Bank was recently hacked and money stolen from many people's accounts. Morrison's supermarket also suffered from a leak of information by a disgruntled employee. It is understandable that many people are wary when using the Internet for shopping or banking, but there are many ways you can protect yourself online which I will look into below.

Online Shopping and Banking

This is one area where the majority of concern is raised. Sharing card details and bank login details can be concerning for many. Fortunately, this is one of the most secure areas on the Internet.

When making purchases through a website, it is important to make sure that the site you are purchasing from is legitimate. As a rule of thumb, always use a trusted retailer when making purchases as you can normally trust that the websites will be secure and your information will be safe. Watch out for any impostor websites claiming to be a reputable retailer. They could simply be using a fake website with legitimate looking details to steal your details. If you suspect a website is not legitimate, you can use a service such as WhoIs to find out the registration details of that website. A legitimate website will always be transparent and use its legally registered details.

On many shopping sites, you will have to input card details to make a purchase. The checkout areas of any legitimate e-commerce website will use secure technology so that your details are correctly handled. You will be able to tell if the website is secure if you see a green highlight or lock symbol in the browser window. You may also notice that the site starts with HTTPS rather than HTTP which means it has a security certificate attached to the domain.

Cloud Storage

Document storage is important for many people and making sure it is safe from hacking and also from accidentally deleting. You could simply backup all files onto a separate hard drive, however, this can still cause problems if something were to happen to that hard drive.

The best solution is to keep important files backed up on an external server, whether that is your own server or a cloud storage solution such as Dropbox. These cloud storage solutions use high-level security feature to make sure that your details are safely stored and harder to hack.

Make sure that you always use secure passwords when setting up any account that has sensitive information. To do this, you must try and use a combination of numbers and letter and use a mix of lowercase and uppercase. It is important to make sure passwords are different on all website or services so that if your password is guessed correctly on one site, it can't be used to access other services. A password manager such as Dashlane makes it easier to store all of your passwords without having to remember hundreds of different details.

CCTV System

If you are particularly paranoid about Intruders entering your home or have a lot of expensive equipment or sensitive information in your home, a CCTV system or security camera could e a perfect solution.

Not only are security cameras a deterrent to any would be criminal. They allow you to track any movement in your home. Most modern CCTV systems will have network capabilities meaning you can access the cameras from your phone or web when you are away from the building.

It is also possible to get security cameras from companies like Nest who provide several smart home gadgets. The internal and external security cameras are very easy to set up and allow you to connect to them using a simple app. They also have the added ability to be able to speak into your phone which will then be broadcast through the camera itself, a great way to warn off any intruders.

Antivirus and Anti-spyware

Keeping your computer's and mobile devices secure means that you will need some kind of Antivirus and Anti-spyware to protect yourself from any malicious attack.

Antivirus will protect your device from any malicious files that may be accidentally downloaded through no fault of your own. While it is always important to be vigilant when downloading or accessing information from unknown sources, an antivirus will add an extra layer of security that should warn you when any dodgy file has been downloaded.

Anti-spyware is similar to antivirus, except it will block any attempt to steal your information from you while online, for example when you access any malicious shopping sites that have been set up to steal information.

Firewalls

A firewall can come in the form of software or hardware and can be placed on individual devices or whole networks.

I would always advise that you have a firewall setup on your router at the very least so that you can control what sort of traffic can access your network. It is also possible to purchase a physical firewall device that can be attached to your network as added security.

A firewall should always be installed on each specific device on your network to prevent any unwanted traffic from accessing certain devices. These firewalls can be individually controlled so that each device has its own settings.



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