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10 sure shot ways to keep hackers at bay

By putting the aforementioned measures into practice, you can protect yourself and your information from hackers. 

data hacker hiding data
Image: Dr. Hempel Digital Health Network

When was the last time you were not connected or online? These days we don’t go offline at all. Our phones are always connected to the Internet, and we spend a substantial amount of time online from laptops or desktops at the office or home. In fact, even TVs, ACs, washing machines, and refrigerators are linked to the Internet.

Therefore, we cannot stress enough how crucial it is to take proactive measures to protect your online self. The slightest of blunders can make way for cybercriminals to invade your personal space and walk away with your sensitive data. To help you out, we have discussed some simple yet effective ways to keep yourself safe from these malicious actors:

Keep Your Software Updated

Always use authentic software and keep the auto-update feature on. The manufacturing companies keep releasing security fixes on a regular basis to patch any vulnerabilities that could be exploited by hackers. Also, keep checking and removing software and apps that are no longer in use.

Install an Anti-Virus

By installing a robust anti-virus on your devices, you can stay protected against various threats like malware, spyware, ransomware, etc. There are many free anti-virus software on the Internet, but if you’re looking for fool-proof protection, we’d advise going for trusted paid options. In fact, now many devices come with pre-packaged anti-virus tools. So, check if yours has an anti-virus program, and if not, get a paid one.

Remove Personal Data from Old Devices

Whether you are planning to buy a new phone or upgrade your PC, it is crucial to remove all the data stored on them. Remember, just a factory reset isn’t good enough. You must take help from third-party apps that help in removing the data permanently by overwriting it multiple times. In this way, even if someone tries to get your data back with the help of data recovery tools, they will only get dummy data and nothing of any value to extort money out of you.

Use Strong Passwords + Two Factor Authentication

Since passwords are the gateway to your personal space, you should make sure to choose long, strong, and unique passwords for every login. Here are some other pointers to keep in mind:

  • Apply two-factor authentications for all accounts
  • Use a password manager like LastPass for generating and storing your complex passwords
  • Change your passwords frequently

Answer Security Questions Smartly

Security questions are still a thing and you must answer them smartly. After all, it is easier for hackers to figure out the real maiden name of your mother. Hence, you should come up with something unexpected and unique like Mona Lisa, instead. That’s just an example though, and you can choose your answers as per your own preferences.

Important Data should Be Kept off the Cloud

Important data like confidential documents should never be uploaded on the cloud. Once the data goes on the cloud, hackers have more avenues to access it. Furthermore, the cloud services you use may not always be 100% safe from hacking attempts themselves. Having your stuff offline keeps it much more secure than you can imagine.

Avoid TMI on Social Media

You should not be sharing TMI (Too Much Information) on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites. For instance, going to a vacation and posting details like the location, time, etc. can alert thieves of a great opportunity to target your house. Have you ever watched “The Bling Ring”? The movie is based on a real-life story of “a group of fame-obsessed teenagers who use the internet to track celebrities’ whereabouts in order to rob their homes”.

Be Careful when Using Public Wifi

You shouldn’t use public WiFi at any cost – not without a VPN at least. And if you do, make sure you don’t access any sensitive information or conduct any financial transactions. These networks are often very easy to access and lack encryption of any kind, making it easier than ever for hackers to eavesdrop on your online activities and steal your data.

Use a VPN Always

Using a VPN is an effective way to keep yourself secure from hackers who are always looking for ways to get their claws on your information. With your data encrypted and IP address masked, you’re able to browse with peace of mind on both public and private WiFi networks. However, there’s a drill here – free VPNs can be a curse more than the blessing because they will sell your personal data for profits as it is their only source of income.

You should focus on finding a paid VPN for Windows and mobile like PureVPN that can provide the proper security and doesn’t cost much either.

Only Click on Trusted Attachments and Links

Social engineering is still very relevant, even after all these years. Hackers use this tactic to get you to click on malicious or infected links, which allows them to get into your personal device. So be very careful when clicking on anything slightly suspicious – be it a link or an attachment!

Final Word

By putting the aforementioned measures into practice, you can protect yourself and your information from hackers. 

What do you do to shield yourself from hacking attempts? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Chris has been blogging since the early days of the internet. He primarily focuses on topics related to tech, business, marketing, and pretty much anything else that revolves around tech. When he's not writing, you can find him noodling around on a guitar or cooking up a mean storm for friends and family.

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