Computers and tech devices may have been a regular part of our daily lives. However, many people still don’t understand the repercussions of these technologies. As discussed in Knowing the Difference Between Privacy and Security, most people even think these terms are, more or less, the same… but they aren’t!
To be honest, computers can be easily infected by viruses. Yes, not all viruses may be considered as an immediate threat. However, viruses may pave the way for more hazardous consequences. That’s why the key is to be safe and private in this borderless digital world is to understand the risks of the interaction with technology.
A Lurking Malware
A computer virus is just one of the many kinds of malware. In fact, it is the oldest form. Regardless if it is a virus or not, the fact remains the same: a malicious software is created to bring harm to computers and other mobile devices.
More often than not, a computer virus comes with malicious intent. Whether it is written in the virus or it is something that the virus installs, these actions can pose a threat to your devices like indirectly allowing cybercriminals and hackers to access your computer. Moreover, they can obtain your personal information such as your bank account details and your credit card numbers.
Also, these malware can direct your computer and/or mobile device to unwanted websites and ask for a fee in order to open it back again. I have discussed this specifically on The Thing About Ransomware.
How to maintain privacy and security in this modern world?
To serve as a protection, cybersecurity products are made to ensure our privacy and security. For example, you can use a VPN when browsing online. A virtual private network, or VPN as it is commonly known, is a cybersecurity tool that allows you to be anonymous online. This is particularly useful when you are at a coffee shop, a crowded airport, or any public place.
Through the VPN, your personal data and your internet activity will be masked and encrypted to keep it away from prying eyes. To know more about VPNs, refer to my post on 4 Factors to Consider when Choosing the Right VPN. Just be careful on installing the free VPNs out there. They aren’t exactly the best candidate! (See: Free VPN Isn’t the best VPN)
Tips for protecting your privacy and security
At the end of the day, you should not choose between privacy and security. You should strive to have both! Here are the things you can do to promote both privacy and security:
- Avoid social media. If you cannot, at least, try to limit what you post online in general.
- Shred documents and other things in your mailbox before throwing them away.
- Keep your social security number and other important cards in a safe place. Do not bring them at all times!
- Protect your computer and other devices with the help of cybersecurity tools and anti-malware softwares.
- Refrain from using a public Wi-Fi. If you can’t avoid it, then, use a VPN to secure the connection.
- Lastly, don’t just hand your information to every website. Learn how your personal data is used by different websites. Once shared, you can never take it back. Always read the terms and conditions before signing up.