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Online data protection is of great importance.

With the ever-increasing rise in using social networking websites, e-mail and online shopping…

… users and consumers need to be increasingly vigilant to guard against cyber-thieves and scammers.

Especially when entering their credit cards details, home addresses and other confidential information online.

Limit the amount of information shared online

Stop sharing more information than need be when revealing personal data.

On social networking sites, avoid revealing addresses or other compromising information and share personal information only with people you can trust.

Make sure all family members are aware of what’s considered appropriate information to share online.

Strengthen passwords

Strong passwords are composed of a combination of numbers, upper- and lower-case letters and symbols.

Avoid easily guessable passwords, such as birthdays, maiden names, spouses, pets, etc.

Avoid using the same password across multiple online accounts.

With unique passwords, if one account is compromised, other accounts are still protected.

No point in securing a password if you'll make it public

No point in securing a password if you’ll make it public

To help you keep track of your passwords, consider using an open-source password manager, like KeePass.

Review website security settings

Make sure websites are secure before providing personal information.

Secure website URL addresses start with “https://”.

You can recognize them by the lock icon showing on the address bar.

Online data protection is not a child's play, yet there's much you can do

Online data protection is not a child’s play, yet there’s much you can do

When making online purchases, use reputable and recognized websites. Look for trusted site seals, like VeriSign.

Regularly update your operating system, antivirus software, etc.

Rule of thumb: to keep your computer protected from backdoors, vulnerability, 0 day exploits.

To guard your system from malware, viruses and spyware, ensure antivirus software is up to date as well.

Don’t be a statistic, act fast and before abusers.

Online data protection happens with safe online behavior

Access personal information, such as bank accounts, personal documents and email, from private computers.

Only in emergencies and urgent cases, access your private information through a public computer.

But make sure you properly logoff of personal accounts before ending the session by closing each window.

Stay on the safe side, change the password afterwards and from a trusted PC.

Read also: 5 Tips To Make Mobile Phone Hacking Harder

According to the results of an analysis from ThreatLabZ, Zscaler’s security research arm in 2012:

  • 10% of mobile apps expose user passwords and login names
  • 25% expose personally identifiable information
  • 40% communicate with third parties

Don’t trust mobile apps easily or quickly.

[Image credit: Flickr/theatomiclizard]

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