There’s nothing quite as frustrating as having to contact your bank to tell them the charges on your credit card are fake. If you spend a lot of time online, you probably know how annoying scammers and hackers can be. Today, we’re going to help you take a few steps to keep scammers out of your online accounts so they can’t access your finances or personal information.
A few simple precautions now can save you plenty of headaches down the line. Let’s talk cybersecurity!
Use a password manager like LastPass or Google Chrome’s built-in manager. Hackers have a way of cracking passwords, and the longer you use the same handful of passcodes on every site you use, the more likely you are to have one compromised. Once hackers know which password you’re using for one site, they’ll try it on every account associated with your email address.
This means you should also use a different password for each website, and change the passwords often. Typically, you want to use passwords that are unintelligible strings of numbers and letters, as these are extremely hard to guess. Make sure you have a password manager keeping up with all of these changes and long passwords, though!
Services like online retailers and web browsers will often ask you if you want to save your credit card information so you don’t have to input it every time you buy something. Resist the urge to make things simpler by doing this. If that account is ever compromised, it means your credit card info leaks, too.
Just bite the bullet and put your card info in every time you buy something online. If this strategy also causes you to shop online less frequently, consider it a blessing in disguise. You didn’t need those fuzzy pink slippers.
Be extremely careful when you’re online using public Wi-Fi. It’s trivially easy for hackers to compromise public networks and track your activity over these systems. Never log into your bank account or other sensitive pages while on an unsecured public network.
If you have to handle sensitive information while you’re away from a private network, use your smartphone’s Wi-Fi hotspot functionality. You can set up your own password with this function, allowing you to browse the web without having to worry about prying eyes looking at your activity.