Learning to surf the Internet safely is a vital skill for any web user. Scammers are continuously developing new ways to try and steal your money, your data – or even your identity.

So how do you stay safe online?

1. Don’t click links

Criminals love to send fake links to unsuspecting victims by email. Ever received an email from your bank that doesn’t look quite right? If you click the link, you’ll be sent to a website that looks like your bank’s – but it is run by scammers, designed to do nothing but steal your user name and password.

It’s not just “bank” emails though. Dating sites, social networking sites or shopping sites – scammers will use anything to get you to click through.

How do you protect against being redirected to a fake website? Don’t click the link. You can type the correct web address into your browser yourself. When you log into your account, you can check if your bank really has tried to contact you.

2. Don’t visit high risk sites

Gambling, adult content and illegal software sites are all popular with hackers because they make it easy to spread malware. Visiting sites in these high risk categories place you at increased danger of falling victim to computer viruses.

3. Check the site security

When visiting a new shopping site for the first time you should pay close attention to their security. Fortunately, this is much simpler than it sounds.

As you click through to the checkout, take a look at the browser’s address bar. Does the address begin https? Is there a little padlock icon? If the answer is yes, all traffic between your computer and the website is encrypted so that no one can steal your data.

Sadly this security provision can be compromised. Hackers can buy SSL certificates for their website to make it harder to spot a fake. To check how trustworthy the site is, click on the padlock icon and look at the certificate details. If the certificates type is listed as “extended validation”, you know that the site belongs to the company – and is fully legitimate.

4. Choose anti-malware with URL checking protection

A good anti-malware package does much more than “just” remove virus infections from your computer. Panda Dome offers a built in content filter to automatically block access to risky sites for instance.

The system checks every link you click on. If the linked website Is known to contain malware, Panda provides blocks access automatically. This automated checking adds another layer of protection – and you don’t have to do anything extra yourself.

Call us today discuss your anti-malware options or to to start your free trial today.

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