As your kids head back to school, you’re probably thinking about lunches, properly packed book bags, classroom assignments and more, but have you also considered safety?
Kasperky Lab offers the following back-to-school safety tips.
Back-to-school online shopping tips
A new school year calls for a new wardrobe and supplies, and buying these items online is often easier and more convenient than going to the store. Furthermore, it’s quick and easy to enroll in courses and pay tuition online.
Did you know that 44 percent of consumers reported that their top internet security concern is having their financial information intercepted when they bank or shop online? How can you ensure your banking information is safe?
- Type in the URL: Instead of clicking a link to your bank or a store, do it the old fashioned way and type in the URL in the address bar. This prevents you from visiting a potentially fake and malicious website.
- Search safely: Search engines are convenient when you’re quickly searching for an item or product review, but you run the risk of unintentionally clicking on poisoned search results created by cybercriminals that could lead you to malware instead of your intended destination.
New friends, new Facebook foes
Going back to school is a great time to meet new friends. While you confirm your new friends on Facebook, confirm your privacy settings, too. Cybercriminals can make up to $200 for your social network login details. How can you be sure not to “friend” a cybercriminal?
- Make sure the person you talk to is really the person you think they are, and don’t add or accept friend requests from people you don’t know. Always verify identity.
- Change passwords frequently and use complex, hard-to-guess passwords with a mixture of letters, numbers and symbols. Also, don’t use the same password on Facebook as on other sites — if the password is compromised on one site, it may be used to access your Facebook account.
Keeping online homework safe
Back to school means back to the books, but in this day, most homework, research and projects are done on the internet. You may not realize that sometimes simply visiting a website or clicking on a link can expose one’s personal information.
Did you know that 22 percent of Google links are malicious? How can you be sure not to click on one?
- Avoid opening suspicious emails. If you receive a suspicious email, a safer option is to visit the site where the message is coming from and access the notification directly, without opening the email or clicking on any links inside it.
- Ensure your applications, including browsers and plugins, as well as your operating system, are updated with the latest security settings to avoid any malicious sites that might attempt to exploit vulnerabilities of outdated software or operating systems.