As we move more and more of our lives online, it is clear that safety is a huge issue we need to be aware of. This means fully understanding all of the different risks on each type of site and knowing what to do about them. The following examples show us how this can be done with little or no fuss while carrying out some of the most popular online activities.=
The Key Points in Banking and Investing
This is an area that people sometimes get nervous about, as they fear their bank accounts being compromised online. At the start of 2021, it was revealed by the Finder site that about 14 million Brits have an account at a digital-only bank with no physical branches. How can they keep their money out of harm’s way?
The first thing to do is check whether the bank is fully authorised to operate in the UK, as this is a guarantee of a professional, responsible approach and will also protect your money to some degree in the case of fraud. They should offer two-factor authentication, and you should use strong passwords to avoid them being guessed easily by hackers.
Mobile phones are generally considered to be safer than desktop PCs and laptops for banking purposes, as it is harder to hack them. Choose a mobile app that lets you use biometric security as well, so that you can be certain that no one else can enter your account using your phone. For instance, the Monese app lets you log on using Face ID, Touch ID or a fingerprint scanner.
When investing online, you will want to only use authorised brokers. The Top Rated FX Brokers website states that forex brokers should be registered with the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK, who only add new brokers once they have proven that their banking system is reliable. They include the likes of 101Investing, FXCM and Plus500 on their list of the top names in the forex industry for safe trading.
A Safer Gaming Experience
Your gaming experiences should be fun and care-free, but hacks have occurred in the past. 77 million accounts were compromised when the Sony PlayStation network suffered an attack in 2011, while a major Xbox Live attack came just before Christmas in 2014. It is difficult to do anything about an entire gaming network being attacked, but there are some tips you can follow to reduce the risks of your details being hacked.
For a start, choose a safe username that doesn’t reveal any of your personal details like your real name or the city where you live. The next step is to be careful who you play with. Not everyone is who they say they are, so unless you know the person in real life it is best to treat other players simply as strangers you can have fun playing with, but not as close friends you can have personal discussions with.
This leads us on to the advice of not sharing personal info while gaming. It can be easy to get caught up in the emotion of the moment, but you should always be careful to not give away any of your personal details that could be useful to a hacker or some other type of cybercriminal.
Don’t automatically use any cheat codes or pirated games you are given, as they may include viruses or malware on them. As with any type of online activity, it is important to use a good anti-virus as you play games too. Free options include software from well-respected names like Avast and AVG.
How to Carry Out Secure Online Shopping
In 2020, online sales made up 30% of the UK’s total retail sales for the first time ever. As more people than ever are looking to buy online, it is a good moment to remember that you should only ever buy from a reputable retailer with a safe website. Look for the padlock that indicates that the HTTPS protocol is used. If you use an iPhone or iPhone for shopping, be sure to add a stronger passcode too.
Another step to consider is the payment method you use when paying for goods. Credit cards are generally considered to be among the safest options, as they are encrypted and most issuers give you protection against fraud. On the other hand, debit cards give you a lower amount of protection and are linked to the money in your bank account.
If you want to store several payment methods in one place, an app like Google Pay or Apple Pay will let you do this using all of the latest security measures. E-wallets like PayPal and Skrill are safe to use provided that you use a reliable provider with good encryption that hides your personal details. Cryptocurrencies potentially offer an ever safer, pseudo-anonymous approach if their acceptance becomes widespread among retailers.
Stick to these simple tips and you can enjoy doing everything you want to online with the minimum of risk and very little effort.