Everything that connects to the Internet technically has the chances of getting hacked. But there are various things which can help you to protect your data from an attack.
Here are a few tips that will reduce the risk of your personal data from getting stolen.
Be suspicious of emails
To find the source of email always click on "Show original" to find the source of the email. Simple malicious email campaigns can cause a great deal of cyber attacks. Email is a wonderful platform for communication through which you can send anything to anyone on anytime, but it could be at high security risk. For example Phishing sends victims seemingly innocuous emails that will lead victims to fake websites asking to update their personal information.
The best way to avoid being scammed by phony emails is to just make sure the recipient is who you think it is. Be sure to check the email address from where you have received the email to see if they match with website you think it's from. To be on extra safer side you can check the IP address of the sender.
Check link locations
Unknown messages contain links to unknown sites. Surfing to an unknown and mysterious website can result in unintended consequences. Sometimes it can be a site either which you know and can trust, which can prevent you from a phishing scam. Or else it may be an unsecure or infected with malware.
Even if you are tempted to click on one of the links, you should be aware of where exactly it's taking you. The best way to avoid is to copy and paste the link location into a new browser to see what site about. URL X-ray tools can be used if it's a short link that finds out the real destination before you click the links.
Encrypted sites are the safest ones to visit. When you see HTTPS in the URL and the lock icon on your browser you know it is the safest site.
Never open attachments
Never open any attachments unless you're really sure from where it has come from and who the sender is.
This is a good rule to follow unless and until you are 120% sure of from where it came. This is one of the easiest ways for hackers to download malicious code onto victim computers is by sending emails with virus-laden files.
A frequent way an enterprise companies get hacked is by downloading malicious software that penetrates into the entire network. PDFs, Word, and .EXEs are the most dangerous file types.
Two-way authentication should be used
As companies as a whole get hacked, the likelihood that your password is leaked increases. Once hackers obtain your passwords, they try to figure out which personal accounts they can access with the data they stole.
Two-factor authentication which requires users to not only enters a password but also confirms entry with another item like a code texted to a phone which is a good way to stop attackers to steal passwords. More and more companies are making it standard for logging in.
Use advanced passwords
This is the most obvious but yet overlooked tip always. A strong password should include numbers, uppercase, lowercase, punctuation, and it should be something which makes no sense for anyone else to guess. Passwords should not be given personal reference, and don't store a list of your passwords in a saved file.
Importantly, same password should not be used for multiple accounts. Passwords for vulnerable accounts like email and banking should be changed frequently.
Be wary of the cloud
Don't share your data if you don't want people to access your information. This includes cloud storage. No matter how secure a platform is, you need to keep in mind that you're giving it to someone else to keep a watch over. many privacy experts have said that anything you put online have the chance of being published online even thou it's in the company's best interests to keep it secure,.
Storing your data on cloud is good but, you should be wary where your files are going. It’s also important to know the practices of your cloud storage provider. Be sure to delete files on any cloud backups if you are deleting from your computer or smart phone.
Using public Wi-Fi? Don't share personal data
Thinking about online shopping or checking your bank account balance while sitting at the coffee shop? You may have to think twice about that, as you have no idea how secure that connection is.
Security researchers uncovered a vulnerability that made Wi-Fi traffic at some of the world's biggest vulnerable to attack. It’s best to be judicious with where you are surfing as there is absolutely no way for an individual to know if this is happening.
If it is must to access private information on these networks, it is good to use tools like virtual private networks (VPNs), which encrypt traffic so the Wi-Fi network can't see where you're surfing. The best option would be to set up a hotspot from your mobile data.