internet security

People do everything online nowadays, from essential things, such as school, work, and business, to finding ways to relax by streaming movies and listening to music and podcasts. They also do a lot of shopping and posting on social media sites. The Internet has, indeed, made everything convenient—like paying bills, setting up appointments, and ordering food and groceries. It even enables one to keep up with friends and family no matter the distance or time zone.

But, not everyone uses the Internet for legitimate purposes. Hackers come up with every imaginable attempt to steal personal data such as passwords, credit card information, social security numbers, and bank accounts. Malware, viruses, and spyware lurk behind seemingly amusing videos or enticing promos. Click on these, and you open your computer and network to a host of malicious software. Worse, you could become a victim of identity theft.

The good news is that you can prevent all these horrible scenarios from happening if you make Internet security a priority. Some ways enable you to browse the Web and enjoy being online. Unfortunately, some of these Internet security measures come at a price. Several products may even require subscriptions that are not that pocket-friendly.

There’s no need to fret as there are some ways that are practical enough to fit your budget. Some are even right in front of you all this time. You didn’t think it would count as an Internet security tool. But, there are free stuff to keep penny-pinchers happy.

Internet Security Tools

Cybersecurity tools often compose malware and antivirus software to keep your computer safe. Check browser settings, have a password manager to keep log-ins safe, use a VPN to secure Internet traffic, and employ an encryption program to prevent spies from tracking your communications. Some of these are built-in on your computer, but others require installation.

cyber security
cyber security

Tight finances won’t hinder you from protecting yourself against hackers, phishing, ransomware, and other suspicious software. Here are some of the Internet security tools you can use for free and some worth including in your budget:

  1. Activate Windows Defender

If your computer runs on Windows 7,8 and 10, you have a free antivirus installed called Windows Defender. As a starting point for your online protection, this built-in antivirus monitors viruses, spyware, and ransomware in real-time. A bit of advice: You need to update Windows regularly for it to work. If ever you have some extra bucks to spare, you can install additional antivirus software to improve your computer’s defense (although doing this often tends to disable Windows Defender).

  1. Browser Settings

You’re not the only one who uses browsers for surfing the Net. Remember the “we use cookies to improve our service”’ phrase that flashes on every site you visit? That’s how companies track your activity and send you targeted ads. These can be helpful, but most of the time, they can be annoying. You can set your browser to clear cookies every after session. If you’re fond of Google, you can always choose the incognito mode. Or you can use alternate browsers like Opera or Firefox instead.

  1. Use Proxies

Proxies can give you several advantages: Hide your IP address and provide you with anonymity, increase speeds, and filter data. Setting up a proxy on your browser takes a few easy steps, such as putting the proxy server address, username, and password.

  1. Grab VPN deals

Virtual Private Networks are also essential Internet security tools. How does it work? The VPN software on your computer encrypts your data, actual location, and IP address then sends it to the VPN server. The information that you request from the public Internet comes back to you using the IP address of the VPN, making its source (you) untraceable.

Companies often use VPN to give their employees remote access. Now, VPNs are used in homes as well. It’s not just for Internet privacy but to avail of several perks such as movie streaming, torrenting, and sharing a VPN network with all your devices. You can even use VPNs while you’re traveling or if you want to unlock more browsing and programs while you’re chillin’ at home.

The VPNs come in the range of being free and expensive. Always remember to compare VPN capabilities and prices so that you can choose among great deals and packages.

  1. Free Secure Email

Emails also need security. Experts even recommend that you have, at least, two or three emails to keep you protected. Reserve one for your personal use, then have another email or two for subscriptions. You can even use secure email providers (besides Gmail) with encryption capabilities to keep your communications private.

  1. Manage Passwords

Passwords are gold mines for hackers. Once they get hold of yours, they can use all your information for all evil intents. Secure them with a password manager which requires a password for all your logins. Or you can make a hard-to-crack password just by thinking of four random words and a number. Add spaces in-between, and you’ll keep hackers scratching their heads or looking for another target. Another tip: Turn off remember passwords on your browser to make sure your information is safe.

  1. Install all-in-one products

Installing several products for Internet security can take a toll on your PC and even your Internet connection. It can slow down your computer and may make Internet connection intermittent. You may need to experiment with various products to find which one is most compatible with your PC and your network.

Good thing some products come as all-in-one packages. These give you protection from unwanted software and block unwanted sites and ads. The VPNs provide you with anonymity. While such Internet security packages may come at a price, installing them is worth every penny and guarantees peace of mind.

Conclusion

Internet security is essential. It keeps you and your computer protected from a host of software maladies and privacy intrusions on your device and your network. There are several tools that you can use to keep you safe online. Some are built-in in your computer and only requires a constant update to work. Others need manual inputs such as browser and proxy settings, while VPNs and all-in-one products may require downloads and some bucks. Safe and secure Internet activity should be a priority for everyone. It may require some expenses at the onset, but these will surely benefit you in more ways than one.

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