Internet users around the world must learn to stay safe online.
That means following a few relatively simple web surfing tactics and using tools like VPNs.
Hackers Are More Active Than Ever
Today’s hackers are more sophisticated than ever, and they are using new tools to steal the personal data of their targets.
Significant hacks like those that hit corporations like Sony and Target have gotten the most headlines in recent years.
But hackers are still targeting individuals who connect to public Wi-Fi hotspots, say the experts at Norton.
Unfortunately, many internet users still connect their devices to public Wi-Fi without a secure connection.
This means when they are at the school library, out to eat at a local restaurant, or surfing the web at a coffee shop, and they are vulnerable to hacking and identity theft.
Avoiding Common Traps From Identity Thieves
Identity thieves tend to use a few relatively common traps.
The first is phishing emails.
Hackers and identity thieves often send bogus emails looking for personal information.
Sometimes they will pose as a financial institution or the IRS.
Sometimes they will pose as an essential individual.
Don’t ever give up your personal information in emails online, and you can avoid this trap.
You’ll also want to avoid visiting dangerous websites.
Some websites embed malware and other traps online, and clicking on the wrong link or entering your personal information in the wrong form field can lead to your data being compromised.
Another common mistake is accessing the web from public Wi-Fi without a secure connection.
This takes us to our next point.
Internet Users Are Using VPNs To Stay Protected
If you want to access the web from public Wi-Fi networks without fearing for your data, then you should use a VPN such as Hot Spot Shield that protects you by securing your internet traffic with cutting-edge technologies.
VPNs, or virtual private networks, work by creating a secure tunnel between your device and a server located somewhere else around the world.
The information passing through the tunnel is encrypted, and your online connection is secured.
This stops hackers from being able to access information from VPN users.
VPN users are also given a new IP address separate from the one provided by their ISP, so they can avoid having their online activity tracked by hackers, government actors, or third parties.
Using a VPN while traveling abroad is a great way to protect your online identity.
An excellent guide I found on VPNs can be found here: VPN Beginner’s Guide on thebestvpn.com.
VPNs Also Promote A Free And Open Internet
In addition to helping internet users stay safe online, VPNs also promote a free and open internet.
VPN users can access content that has been blocked in a specific geo-location, which is great for users in places like China or Iran, where the national governments routinely block website content.
It is also great for travelers and those who would like to access social media and video sites while at school or work.