by Carey Van Vlaaderen, CEO, ESET Southern Africa
The digital world can be scary. And whilst we, as adults, can be intimidated by fast-moving and ever developing technology, what is even more alarming is how tech savvy children of today are. A two year old will comfortably navigate around an iPad, whilst their parent fumbles.
What your child is not privy to, however, are the potential risks of the internet. This may also apply to your in-laws or grandparents who naively go about opening links that are potentially harmful.
Cyber-attacks can be inconvenient, but they can also have far more dangerous results; an attack can mean financial loss as well as reputation damage. Whilst we all go about our lives aware of external danger and ensuring the best security to keep such danger at bay, we can be apathetic about the threats that lurk online.
Here are some tips that you can use to ensure that you and your family are safe whilst online.
1. Secure your home Wi-Fi Network
Think of your home Wi-Fi network as your front door. It is essential you have a lock on both to ensure safety and security.
Neglecting to secure your Wi-Fi means that someone is able to intercept data that is being sent or received. Neighbours, or people nearby, are able to use the network to access the internet, which may slow down activities or consume all your data.
Securing your network is the first step to keeping your information safe.
2. Teach your children safe social networking
Online risks that your children face increase as they get older. Children become more involved with social networks, they use the internet on a more regular basis and they grow more curious. Start your education by teaching your child these simple facts.
o Nothing on the internet is 100% private
o Everything shared on the internet is forever, don’t say or share something that will put you in a compromising position later on.
o Privacy matters, over-sharing online can be detrimental, especially when you are sharing private information.
Let your child know that it is never ever okay to provide information to anyone on the internet without approval.
3. Ensure safe browsing
Most social sites are designed for age groups of thirteen and older. However, even if a child is of age parents should monitor their child’s account use. Parents can set up privacy settings, and control who their child can, or cannot friend. Do not allow your child to share any contact details, such as telephone number, in their profile set up.
Remember, discuss the potential dangers of social networks, and ensure that a child is well educated on what to watch out for and avoid.
4. Learn how to avoid phishing attacks
Phishing attacks are typically fraudulent emails that appear to come from legitimate enterprises. Often you are taken to a bogus website, and you are then asked to divulge sensitive information such as passwords, credit card details, or other account information.
There are various types of phishing. Spear phishing is directed at specific individuals. They are pointed and attackers go to great lengths to make the attack look believable to increase the likelihood of success.
o Your bank will never ask you to send your password or personal information by mail.
o Never go to your bank’s website by clicking on the links included in emails
o Enhance the security of your computer
o Enter sensitive information in secure websites only
o Keep up to date on all the latest in Phishing scams
5. Have a complete internet security solution
Make sure that your computer has a proactive security system that keeps you and your family safe from malware. The security should offer you a complete solution against all types of infiltration and attacks. Such solutions can offer you peace of mind with features such as antivirus, parental control, anti-phishing, device control and more.
About ESET Southern Africa
ESET is a global provider of security software for enterprises and consumers and is dedicated to delivering instant, comprehensive protection against evolving computer security threats. ESET’s products rank among the world’s most advanced security solutions, proven by multiple prestigious awards. ESET NOD32 Antivirus consistently achieves the highest accolades in all types of comparative testing, and is the heart of the virus and spyware detection in ESET Smart Security. ESET Smart Security is an integrated antivirus, antispyware, anti-spam and personal firewall solution that combines accuracy, speed and an extremely small system footprint to create the most effective security solution in the industry. Both products have an extremely efficient code base, allowing faster scanning that doesn’t slow down computers or networks. Sold in more than 160 countries, ESET has worldwide production headquarters in Bratislava, Slovakia and worldwide distribution headquarters in San Diego, California. The ESET Southern Africa head office is situated in Cape Town. www.eset.co.za