This Mother’s Day, tell Mom the truth… staying safe online isn’t so hard after all!
Q: Do I need to add security software to my phone too?
A: Yes. If you have an Android phone, we recommend that you get a security product that protects you against threats and viruses (there are free antivirus products out there!). If you have an iPhone, a VPN goes a long way to ensure you are safe on open Wi-Fi and it helps to protect your privacy when using your phone to bank, shop, etc. while on the go.
Q: It seems like all home appliances these days, like lightbulbs, fridges, TVs, etc. are “smart”. Do I need to do anything to protect these products?
A: There are lots of new smart devices that can provide convenience in your home, but not all were designed with security in mind. We recommend that you secure your router, the gateway between your household and the vast internet. Change your router password and always update your router software when available. Learn more about router attacks and router security and keep yours protected.
Q: I get lots of pop-ups on my computer for tech support — why is that?
A: There are many tech support scams out there. They try to contact you via phone calls, pop-ups on your computer, or via online search results that you click on to inform you about a “problem” with your computer that they can help fix. Don’t fall for these scams. In general, a legitimate tech support company will never contact you unless you initiate a request first. Our recommendation: Ignore all offers of tech support that are initiated by a third party. If you have a problem with your computer, call the company directly through their support or “contact us” page.
Q: If I have a good, secure password, can I use it on all my accounts?
A: You need to use different passwords for your online accounts. The first thing a cybercriminal does when they get a hold of a password is plug it into every account to see how many it unlocks. Get familiar with the best practices for password creation and, better yet, get a password manager. It’s a program that generates random, strong passwords whenever you need them, remembers them for you, and plugs them in so you don’t have to.
Because phishing and spoofing are so prevalent these days, beware of unsolicited emails, especially when they include attachments or links. Whether you think you know the person or not, never download suspicious attachments or click on strange links.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful moms around the world. In return for all you’ve given us, it’s a pleasure to protect your privacy and secure your safety online.