New technology seems to appear daily in today’s fast-paced society. Trying to learn how to operate the latest gadgets and how to avoid the most recent security threats leaves many heads reeling. Meanwhile, safety and privacy concerns abound.
While no measures eliminate all threats — as we learned all too well from the 2017 Equifax breach — taking certain precautions when using today’s latest tech can reduce the chances of losing vital data or revealing personal information. Practice the following tips when using technology to minimize the dangers of constant connectivity.
1. Research What You Buy
All people may be equal, but all tech gadgets are not! Most companies pay close attention to privacy concerns, but using some devices creates risks of exposing personal data in the name of convenience.
When selecting anything from a new laptop to a new baby monitor, use services like Mozilla’s “Privacy Not Included” list to evaluate the privacy the device offers. After purchasing a new gadget, resist the urge to enter all the information the software requests and either skip or opt out of connecting new tools to social media. The world does not need to know who happens to be reading Fifty Shades of Grey on their Kindle.
2. Protect Your Investment
Keep all technology up to date. As hackers launch new attacks, software companies create patches to prevent the threat from spreading to unaffected devices. Failing to update devices regularly means risking falling prey to easily preventable security breaches.
Additionally, always take advantage of any security features new technology offers. While this may mean paying a small monthly or annual fee, the price pales in comparison to the consequences of getting hacked. Anti-virus and anti-malware suites exist for a good reason, so take advantage of them.
3. Realize Hackers Attack More Than Laptops
Many people know to protect their computer and cell phone, but few think about the smart technology in their vehicles or in their video doorbell system. However, these remain vulnerable points for hackers to exploit. For example, as far back as 2015, cybercriminals found a way to unlock the doors of some Chrysler vehicles, leaving them ripe for theft.
4. Educate Yourself on the Latest Scams
Scammers love technology the way George R.R. Martin loves killing off characters in his books. Technology allows hackers more anonymity, making them harder to catch.
One of the largest tech scams occurs when a pop-up appears on computer screens warning users there is a virus on their system. This scare tactic prompts unaware users to take action, and when they click on …