Nowadays a lot of people using Microsoft Windows do not reason about their cybersecurity at all, thinking that the devs have taken care of it while creating Windows Defender. As Windows remains the world’s most popular operating system, the number of devices using it increases every day, so cybercriminals often choose users of this OS as their target.
And more than that, it’s not rare when someone decides to do something to improve their digital security and have no idea where to start.
That is why we want to share with you our top five tips that you may apply today to ensure the security of your data. Sounds exciting? We are thrilled too!
Install a firewall
Installing a firewall might sound difficult, yet it is just a piece of software that protects computers from any unauthorized modifications. Let’s say someone wants to remotely access your PC, the connection will be prohibited by a firewall unless you manually authorize it.
A decent firewall will catch and deny any process that is trying to make changes in your system. The fact that every change has to be manually confirmed makes it almost impossible for cybercriminals to break into your computer. It doesn’t mean that you will have to confirm every action you take while browsing the internet, as modern firewalls will remember your decisions and also give you the option of putting trusted programs on auto-approve.
Be cautious while browsing the internet
When it’s getting late and you have some spare time, you may want to visit some cheesy and sometimes unsecured websites. In case you are working with sensitive information and the data is stored on the same machine that you use to browse the web, the best idea would be to just stop visiting unprotected sites altogether.
It would be even better if you have the possibility to use another device to browse the web for non-working purposes. Always make sure that you use a modern browser that is up to date because visiting unknown websites with an old browser would basically result in a direct invitation for malware to nest in your PC. It is also recommended to install additional security plugins for your browser.
Ensure the security of your connections with a VPN
Without using a VPN service your browsing data can be tracked and stored by third parties, which may compromise your anonymity and security and allow ill-wishers or your internet service provider to use your data as they want. If you, for example, take your laptop to a cafe or any other public place with a shared wifi network, your internet activity might be visible to anyone connected to the same network. If you often use public networks, then a VPN on Windows 10 should be an essential tool for your day-to-day digital security.
Using a VPN protects your internet activity and hides your digital traces by placing every connection that you make in an encrypted tunnel, so no one can intercept it.
Install an antivirus software
For sure, curative measures are not as efficient as preventative ones (it is always better to not let the malware on your PC with a firewall than to use an antivirus to cure it), they are a fundamental element of keeping your computer protected from threats. In other words, using an antivirus is a must these days. There are lots of potential threats to the safety of your data, and when you think you’ve got all your bases covered, some random thing like an infected USB flash drive might cause irreparable damage. At the end of the day, a strong antivirus can’t guarantee that your computer is completely malware-free but it makes your PC as protected as realistically possible. Remember to periodically update your antivirus as utilizing an outdated piece of software only creates a false illusion of security.
Do not leave your computer unattended
Last in our list but not the least important, you have to always be on the alert and lock your screen each time you’re away from the keyboard to oversee your device in person. The four previous tips in this article were concerning your digital security, but having someone compromise your computer by gaining physical access to it is a very credible and dangerous threat. For sure, you can leave your PC unlocked at home, but doing this in a cafe, coworking or any other public place should be the number one rule. Either way, it’s best to develop a habit of doing it, so it becomes second nature to you without having to give it a second thought.
Cybersecurity is a broad topic to discuss and it’s impossible to cover it all in a single article. Although we hope that these five tips will get you and your computer as close as possible to staying safe and secure at all times.