August 3, 2015

Five Computer Safety Tips Everyone Should Know

By Christine Aery, Technology Support Specialist
Computers and the Internet are a great way to keep in touch with friends and family, catch up on the latest news, shop, or simply look up information. Ensure your activities are safe and secure by following these five computer safety tips everyone should know:
Create strong passwords.
Combine letters, numbers, and symbols. The more complex your password is, the harder it is to guess. One trick is to use words and phrases that are easy for you to remember, but difficult for others to guess. For example the phrase “To be or not to be” could become the password “2BOrNot2B?”
Know who you’re doing business with.
It’s quick and easy to create a legitimate looking website, but not all websites are. Search for company websites you are familiar with or have had recommended to you.
Do not expose personal information.
Always be careful of how much personal information you list on social networking or special interest websites.
Watch out for email scams.
“Phishing” describes a way of attempting to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords and credit cards through email claiming to be from a trusted source. Most companies will not ask you to send sensitive information via email. If you are ever unsure, call the company with a number that you already know is legitimate. Don’t trust a number listed in the email.
Beware of Junk E-mail.
Delete junk email, a.k.a. spam, without opening or reading it. Viruses can attack your computer when you open a message or attachment. Never open an attachment unless you are certain you know who sent it and what it contains.