Internet safety

24 August 2016

Top tips to get safe online

Using computers and similar devices to go online has made everyday activities such as shopping, banking, paying bills and keeping in touch fast and easy … anytime, anywhere. There are, however, a number of risks associated with going online – some general and some specific to the respective activities that you carry out.

There are a number of sensible and simple measures which you need to take in order to protect yourself against these risks, which include identity theft, criminals stealing your personal and financial data to defraud you.

The precautions are as simple as choosing safe passwords and ensuring you have adequate antivirus/antispyware installed, to learning how to distinguish between genuine and fraudulent websites and emails.

Principality Building Society is working in partnership with Get Safe Online to provide you with valuable advice on how to protect yourself, and what to do if you are affected.

  1. Choose, use and protect your passwords carefully, and use a different one for every online account in case one or more get hacked
  2. Look after your mobile devices. Don’t leave them unattended in public places, and protect them with a PIN or passcode
  3. Ensure you always have internet security software loaded on computers and a similar app on your mobile devices, and that this is kept updated and switched on. Remember that smartphones and tablets can get compromised as much as computers
  4. You mustn’t assume that Wi-Fi hotspots in places like cafes, bars and hotel rooms are secure, so never use them when you’re doing anything confidential online. Instead, use mobile 3G or 4G networks or, if it’s for work, a VPN (virtual private network)
  5. Never reveal too much personal or financial information in emails, on social networking and dating sites and in person. You never know who might see it, or use it
  6. Always consider that online or on the phone, people aren’t always who they claim to be. Fake emails and phone calls are a favourite way for fraudsters to approach their victims
  7. Don’t click on links in emails, posts, tweets of texts – and don’t open attachments – if the source isn’t 100% known and trustworthy, or it seems strange that you’d be receiving them
  8. Be conscious of accessing compromised websites which have the intention of harvesting your login credentials and personal information 
  9. Never pay for anything by direct bank transfer – including goods, services, tickets, travel and holidays – unless it’s to someone you know personally and is reputable
  10. Take your time and think twice, because everything may not be as it seems. Remember that if something seems too good to be true, it probably is.

Many people unfortunately make themselves easy targets and are much more likely to suffer Identity theft or fraud if they do not follow some of the simple steps above. Detailed information can be found here:*

*By clicking on the links you will leave the Principality website - Principality is not responsible for the content of external websites.

Published: 24/08/2016