When the World Wide Web first came to life in the 1990s, it opened up new possibilities but also a new set of threats. Spam was a major cause of email disruption and computer viruses caused chaos on corporate networks and hacking was a major problem. Hackers could steal your personal information and access your online bank or credit account, and then sell your information on the dark web for a lot of money.
Your online life has become more complex than ever. You’re on the phone, shop online, make purchases online, access Facebook and even your IoT devices and other internet-connected devices track and report on your activities. Hackers have access to all of the information, regardless of whether they are part of a criminal group or just a random person with an agenda of political inclination.
Create strong passwords for all your online accounts. Make use of a password manager to manage them. Consider using two-step authentication. This provides an additional layer of security by requiring you to enter a code sent to your phone or email address along with your password when logging in. Secure your hard drive to make it harder for hackers to access your personal data even if they gain control of your mobile or computer. Also, make sure to disable ‘run as administrator’ on your computers, do not jailbreak or root your phones, and close down your computer instead of leaving it running all day (all-time running ruins your device performance and opens the way to cyberattacks). With the appropriate software tools for malware screening as well as uninstalling and encryption of data will reduce the risk of being a victim.