Man using laptop

Tips for Protecting Yourself Online

1. Keep your computer and mobile devices up to date. Having the latest security software, web browser and operating system are the best defenses against online threats. Turn on automatic updates so you receive the newest fixes as they become available.

2. Set strong passwords. A strong password is at least eight characters in length and includes a mix of upper and lowercase letters, numbers and special characters.

3. Watch out for phishing scams. Phishing scams use fraudulent emails and websites to trick users into disclosing private account or login information. Do not click on links or open attachments or pop-up screens from unfamiliar sources.

4. Keep personal information personal. Lock down your privacy settings on your social media profile and avoid positing things like birthdays, addresses, mother's maiden name, etc. 

5. Secure your internet connection. Always protect your home wireless network with a password and be cautious about what information you send over public WiFi networks.

6. Shop safely. Before shopping online, make sure the website uses secure technology. Look for a tiny padlock symbol in the address bar and make sure the web address begins with https.

7. Read the site's privacy policies. Though long and complex, policies tell you how the site protects the personal information it collects. If you don't see or understand a site's privacy policy, consider doing business elsewhere.