Do you know what Cyber Security is? Wondering, how does it concern you and your kids?
In the last decade, we have seen the evolution of the internet. From dial-up modems to broadband, technology has hijacked the globe. Today, the first thing a toddler tries to use is a phone. For sure, there are tremendous benefits of the internet and technology but the threats it possesses cannot be ignored. Parents should be mindful of their and their kids’ internet usage and make efforts to keep online experiences safe. It is very important to secure your online activities and practice necessary cyber security.
Wondering how? First of all, let us learn what cyber security is.
What is Cyber Security and its Types?
Cyber security is a practice of taking measures to keep your digital devices, servers, networks and information safe from digital attacks. It can also be termed as Information technology security or Electronic information security. It can be of various types:-
Network Security– Network Security is a set of measures of securing your computer network from unwanted elements like attackers or malware.
Application Security- Application Security mainly aims at saving your software and devices from foreseen issues and threats.
Information Security– Information Security focuses on protecting your data in storage or transit form.
Operational Security- It deals with the location of storage of your data as well as how it will be saved.
Importance of Cyber Security
Cyber security is necessary because your data is accessed by many legitimate and illegitimate sources. Government, Military, medical organizations can store your data including sensitive information or credit details. But if any unauthorized person gets access to this information, it can lead to negative consequences. Moreover, hackers can get access to your confidential data from websites or your own computer if not concealed properly. Later they use it to dupe you or harass you. Needless to say, it is very necessary to take care of your personal information and mask it from unsolicited sources.
That’s all for an introduction to cyber security. I know going deep into the technicalities boggles your mind. That is why we will not confuse you with difficult terms. We will just cover how you can practice cybersecurity in your and your kids’ lives.
Parents’ Guide To Cyber Security
Adopting these simple yet effective measures in your and your kid’s lives and technology usage can greatly reduce the chances of something bad happening.
Click and Download Responsibly
Often when you are browsing on the internet or accessing social media sites, you see some bogus links. If you click on them, it will take you to some completely new site advertising spam pages. It can even plant viruses and malware on your devices or post some bad posts on your timeline. Similarly, rogue apps that look exactly similar and seem legitimate can offer sexually explicit material or install malicious software on your system or phone. So, think twice before you click on any link online and try to convey to your kids the same.
Beware of Phishers
Phishing is probably the most used cyber scam to hack your systems. Through emails, they can act like they are from your bank or any other official place and convince you to click on the link given. Try to confirm first every time by typing the web address yourself into your browser and then only go ahead.
Use Strong Passwords
One important aspect of cyber security is being responsible for your passwords. Set your and your kids’ passwords smartly and change them periodically. Avoid using similar passwords for multiple sites.
Use Security Software
Always use security software and legitimate ad blockers like Ad Guardian Plus to keep your devices safe. Many other paid and free programs are available to remove malware and viruses from your computers. Choose one according to your own needs.
Shop On Only Legitimate Sites
You must have noticed every site has a web address starting from HTTP. Prefer visiting sites that have HTTPS at the beginning as S stands for secure and it provides an extra layer of safety.
Secure Wi-Fi Usage
Avoid using public Wi-Fi networks as it is comparatively less secure than personal ones. Moreover, secure your home network by applying appropriate encryption keys and passwords.
Keep Apps and Software Updated
It is very important to keep your apps and software up to date as genuine companies make constant efforts to identify cyber security flaws and fix them with new updates.
Beware of Shiny Syndrome
“If it seems too good to be true, then it probably is.” Always use this mantra of cyber security while accepting any free perks received on an email address or dealing with strangers.
Use Parental Controls
This one is especially for your kids. There are some threats specially targeted at your little ones. It can be extra harder for kids to identify potential threats owing to their trusting nature and less critical thinking abilities. Download reliable parental control apps like Bit Guardian Parental Control to identify security concerns like interaction with hackers, online harassment by keeping an eye on them. You can also monitor their contacts, texts and calls and warn them before it’s too late.
Your kids may seem too naive. But, if they are big enough to use technology, they should be wise enough to know about cyber threats too. Talk to them about cyber security and take the above-mentioned precautions in your and your kids’ day-to-day lives. Just as with everything, you cannot completely get rid of each and every potential threat attached to the internet and technology. But, by being aware you can greatly reduce the risks.