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(Check your browser for a padlock or a URL beginning with https:// for some certainty and don’t ever visit a download link sent you via email – see point #2 above) After more than a quarter century in security, it still seems to me that many people still expect to find a 100 per cent solution for all the security issues that plague us, and are furious when a solution doesn’t meet their expectations.
Unfortunately, vendor marketing isn’t good at expectation management, often offering simplistic solutions to complex problems, single solutions that are supposed to render all other products obsolete.
If you can’t bear to spend money on security software (preferably a full-strength security suite), then at least look into the possibility of reinforcing your free anti-virus with other free but genuine, reliable security software such as a browser sandbox.
Having argued (convincingly, I hope) for multi-layering, on the grounds that where one approach fails, another might succeed, I’m going to mention a security layer that often gets overlooked: you.
If you can’t afford to buy a license there are plenty of free options for home users such as AVIRA, AVG, AVAST and Microsoft etc.
Online or email scams are no longer identifiable by poor grammar and spelling mistakes.
If your login credentials are ever grabbed by a hacker – and with the number of data breaches in the news every week it’s a case of when, not if – the attacker will have inadvertently gained access to your entire digital world.
If creating a large number of complex, hard to guess passwords is a challenge consider using a password manager such as Last Pass which can store all your credentials for you, leaving you with just one master password to remember.
I often read that Many social media sites now allow you to augment password authentication with at least one secondary authentication method, such as Facebook’s Login Approvals, which uses a token (security code) sent to your cellphone by SMS or its own authenticator app.
Contained within will be links to copycat sites under the bad guys’ control which will steal your personal data – and maybe your money too – should you visit them and enter your username and password.
We live in a digital age in which we can download just about anything we want to watch, listen to or use… While there are hundreds of legitimate sites from which digital content can be downloaded, there are thousands more that offer bogus, and harmful content, filled with malware designed to steal your financial and other personal information.
I really hope that most people nowadays know that viruses are not the only security threat they need to worry about, but all too often, all that they do is install an (often free) anti-virus program.
As long as it’s a genuine security program rather than some kind of alluringly marketed malware – but it’s not enough to provide anything like complete protection.