Here are 5 ways to secure your tech life

By Eric Geier (Our Founder & Owner)

Originally published by Cox Media Group on 11/29/21

As you probably know, the Internet can be a playground for criminals and bad guys. But with some precautions you can still safely enjoy the Internet, computers, and other connected devices. So here I share some tips to help keep your digital life secure:

 

Enable two-factor authentication: If you get any type of virus or scammer on your computer, most will seek out any saved passwords on your computer.

Therefore, I highly suggest enabling two-factor authentication for your sensitive online accounts like email, banks and online stores. This would require an extra step to log in to your account after entering the password, such as entering a one-time code sent to you via email, text message or a phone call.

You can usually make the two-factor authentication required with every login or just logins from new/ other computers. I suggest at least the latter on your important accounts. That way if your passwords are ever captured by a scammer or virus, the two-factor authentication can stop them from logging in even though they might have your correct password.

Secure your smartphones and tablets: If you have a smartphone or tablet that runs Android or an Apple iPhone or iPad, you should lock it so you have to enter a password, pin or use your fingerprint to unlock it. This will keep others off of the device if you ever lose it.

Plus, I recommend turning on the remote location features. Most times this is on by default, but you should double check now before you lose the device.

If they are turned on and the device is powered on and connected to the cell service or Wi-Fi, you’re in luck if you lose the device.

You can login to your Google or Apple account from another mobile device or a computer to see the device location and make the device play a sound even if it is on silent or vibration mode. You can even remotely secure it with a password (if it isn’t already) and remotely erase your data.

Buy Malwarebytes anti-malware: Most anti-virus software won’t stop what is typically referred to as potentially unwanted programs.

These PUPs are not true viruses, but are typically considered scams or junk that average computer users are tricked into downloading.

They can seem like viruses at times too, giving you pop-ups and making it hard to close them.

To help remove any PUPs you have now and to stop any that try to come, I suggest buying the premium edition of Malwarebytes anti-malware (https://www. malwarebytes.com). It’s relatively inexpensive when compared to other antiviruses and protects you well from viruses and just plain junk you don’t want on your computer.

Don’t fall for phone or computer scams: There are endless scams and scammers out there, and falling victim usually costs you a few hundred dollars. But it could cost you even more if your identity is compromised.

Just remember, if the situation doesn’t seem right, it probably isn’t. If you get a phone call out of the blue saying something is wrong with your computer or internet, or if your computer says to call someone, just ignore it and find a local reputable computer professional to get advice. Don’t trust anyone to remotely fix your computer unless you know you’re talking to someone from a local reputable company.

Get a checkup and tune-up every year: Even if you aren’t having any apparent issues, I strongly suggest having a tech check your computer every year and do some general cleaning and tune-up tasks. This can help catch any issues before they become a real problem, such as a hard drive starting to die or slowness due to junk buildup. This helps safeguard your files, documents and photos. Plus, it can also better help protect you from hackers, viruses, and phishing attempts that could impact your credit and financial accounts.

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