Get more secure online when using Avast Secure Browser with these 3 tips
It can sometimes feel like there’s no way to stay secure online. For people who don’t have a tech background, the ways that cyber criminals and thieves can steal our information can seem like magic. After all, they’re basically coming into spaces that we consider private — our homes, our phones, our laptops, and our tablets.
But while it can all feel overwhelming sometimes, there are simple things you can do to make sure your information is more secure.
Think of how you secure your house when you leave. You lock the doors. You close and lock the windows. You pull the curtains. Are those things going to stop a determined thief from stealing your television? Probably not. But they’ll keep out the majority.
So here are three things you can do today to be more private and secure online. They only take a few minutes each and you can think of them like those locks and shades: They’re a great first step toward protecting yourself.
Enable Two-Factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication (also known as 2FA or TFA) is available now for many important accounts, including email, your iOS account, Google, and some social media. When you enable 2FA, your account asks for a secondary code after you put in your password. However, unlike a PIN — which is static — for 2FA you’ll be sent a unique code over SMS or through an authenticator app if you use one. You won’t be able to enter your account without entering that code first.
The idea behind 2FA is that it adds a second layer of security. Only someone who has your phone in their physical possession (which is hopefully only ever you) can access your accounts. It’s a great way to deter hackers who may have purchased your password or hacked it from a larger list.
Start Using A Password Manager
Speaking of passwords, are you still using the same one for everything? Most people know by now that using the same password on multiple accounts is a bad idea — but plenty of people still do it. That’s because we have so many accounts these days that remembering all of them would be impossible. However, if you use the same password on multiple accounts and that password is compromised, you’ve potentially opened yourself up to theft.
The solution is using a password manager, which securely stores all of your passwords. All you have to remember is one, secure password to get into the password manager. That’s it! They also usually have a random password generator, making it easier to create secure passwords that are hard to guess or crack. And because they’re stored for you, you don’t have to worry about remembering them. You can add a password extension to your Avast Secure Browser, install them from the Addons Store or the Chrome Web Store.
Get A VPN
The third thing you can do to make yourself more secure online is start using a VPN. VPN stands for Virtual Private Network and it does exactly what it sounds like: create a private network for you to access the internet. More specifically, a VPN creates an encrypted “tunnel” between you and your server, making it extremely difficult (if not impossible) for attackers and thieves to intercept your web traffic.
VPNs are especially important when you’re accessing a public WiFi network, like in a cafe or an airport, because the lack of a password (or a freely available password) on those networks leave them open to hacking and interception. They’re also a great option for people who are concerned about government spying or for people in places where certain websites are blocked.
With VPNs — as with many of the services that exist for keeping you more safe online — you get what you pay for. Some "free" VPNs have been known to collect and sell customer data, defeating the purpose of a VPN in the first place. So while it may be tempting to sign up for a free VPN, spend a few dollars for greater protection.
Another benefit is that you can use a VPN to access information only available in a specific country. You’ll connect to a server in that location, which then opens up sites usually unavailable in your region. It’s useful when you’re performing research on similar businesses with data and information you’d like to incorporate in your company. A VPN is possibly the single most important tool for maintaining your security and privacy online, and this browser delivers just that with excellent quality.
So there you go — three things you can do today to make yourself more secure and private online. No more excuses.