Social Media Scams, And How To Protect Yourself From Cyber Criminals
Social Media Scams, And How To Protect Yourself From Cyber Criminals
When it comes to social media, it’s easy to forget that all of your information and connections are stored in the cloud and could easily be hacked. Since hackers are after your personal data to sell on the black market, and you’re likely connected to hundreds of people through your different accounts, there’s no telling how much sensitive information you might reveal about yourself and your loved ones. To protect yourself from cyber criminals and make sure you don’t lose access to your accounts forever, here are some basic cyber security tips to safeguard your social media accounts from hackers.
1)Change your passwords;
Changing your passwords on a regular basis is critical for protecting your accounts. While you’re at it, make sure you’re using different passwords for each account. You can help prevent hackers from stealing your information by adding two-factor authentication (2FA) to every account that supports it—especially those holding sensitive data. 2FA requires users to enter an additional code sent via text message or generated by an app like Google Authenticator in order to log in. If someone tries to log into your account and they don’t have access to your phone, they won’t be able to get in. Some websites, such as Facebook and Twitter, allow you to enable login approvals. When enabled, you must provide a second form of identification before logging in from a new device. This helps ensure that only people who know your password are accessing your account. Additionally, it’s smart to set up recovery email addresses for all of your online accounts; these are email addresses used only for identity verification purposes when recovering an account with lost credentials. These emails are separate from any personal email address you may use, so they aren’t vulnerable to attacks. Lastly, if you haven’t already done so, start using HTTPS everywhere possible. HTTPS encrypts your communications with websites and apps so that third parties can’t eavesdrop on your activity or inject malicious content into otherwise legitimate sites. It also ensures that others can’t impersonate sites in ways that could trick you into handing over sensitive information.
2)Don’t reuse passwords;
One of your biggest vulnerabilities when it comes to cyber security is your password—don’t reuse passwords across multiple accounts, and use a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols. It may be annoying, but it will increase your safety.
3)Enable two-factor authentication;
Given how important it is to protect your accounts, a strong password isn’t enough. It’s a good idea to enable two-factor authentication on your social media platforms and email account (and even on more obscure sites that have financial or other sensitive information). Two-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security for you by requiring you to enter a special code sent to your mobile device when you log in—this way, if someone tries logging into your account from an unrecognized computer, they won’t be able to do so without knowing that extra code. If you use Gmail, it also comes with built-in two-factor authentication—you can just check off Require Security Code in Settings under Signing In & Security.
4)Change security settings on social media accounts;
Cybersecurity is a significant concern for many businesses. And with constant news of high-profile hacks, it’s understandable that you’d want to beef up your social media security settings. But where do you start? Here are some simple steps you can take today
5)Create complex passwords and usernames;
Passwords and usernames are supposed to be secret, but they’re not. There are several ways hackers can determine what you use. They can employ software that guesses passwords or usernames or pay someone who has access to your accounts and look through your security settings (hint: tech support is sometimes able to take a peek). To be safe, you should change any default password, username or answers to security questions whenever you sign up for a new site. Also: don’t use your birthday for anything—especially your password. Also also: come up with complex combinations of random characters that you can remember easily. The more random, unique and difficult it is for anyone else to figure out, the better off you’ll be when it comes time enter them in online forms.
6)Update your software regularly;
Most people use social media on a daily basis, and we often have many accounts across different platforms. That makes us prime targets for hackers. And, unfortunately, our tech devices are some of their most desired prizes because they can help them gain access to our other accounts and information about us. To stay safe online and keep your business cyber secure, it’s important that you update your software regularly with security patches when they become available—even if you don’t think you need them. Over time as bugs are discovered in operating systems, browsers and applications more security issues are found that could allow someone access to your device and potentially even your other social media accounts. With any new updates, be sure to check for both security updates and feature upgrades before downloading them. If you aren’t sure how to check or download an update then talk to someone who knows how. It might seem like an unnecessary step, but updating your tech devices is one of the best ways to protect yourself against cyber threats while using social media every day.
Evaluate what apps you currently have installed: Not only should you regularly update your technology, but also evaluate what apps you currently have installed and whether or not they are actually necessary. Many times people download apps without realizing how much data is being sent back home to their developer—and sometimes even track where users go around town.
7)Back up everything;
Make sure you have all your important documents saved digitally. This includes photos, music and all those vacation videos that seem meaningless when you delete them from your camera. Make copies of your important financial documents too and keep them in a secure location like an encrypted thumb drive. Don’t just email copies to yourself either; tech savvy hackers can easily get access to your personal account with passwords such as password123. If they don’t get into your bank accounts or online resources, they could ruin you by getting access to something much more emotional – like nude selfies or X-rated vacation videos! Would you risk it?
8)Change security settings on mobile devices;
Ensure your security settings are updated on all of your mobile devices, as many social media accounts are compromised by way of smartphone or tablet. You should also be mindful of how much information you store on your phone and apps; some allow you to create a backup that is available online, which can be accessed by anyone who gets their hands on it. Encourage friends and family members to do likewise with their personal tech. When you see others respond positively, it will give you an idea about whether others could be inclined to take part in such a strategy for themselves. You can never have too many precautions when it comes to security, so anything that encourages more people to join in and follow suit is worth pursuing.