Think about how much you do online, and how much information you share about yourself in the process. Take, for example, the time that you spend on social media, sharing photos and videos of yourself, talking about trips that you’re going to be taking, or just posting about your viewpoints on a variety of topics. And don’t forget about all of the shopping that you do online, sharing your credit card information with a range of stores, from independently owned shops to huge businesses.
Putting all of that information online might put you at risk of having it stolen by hackers or scammers. But don’t worry, as there are surprisingly easy ways that you can work toward keeping your personal information as secure as possible online. Check out the tips below to begin.
Regain Control Over Where Your Information Is Stored and Shared
One of the most important things that you can do is regain control over where your personal info can be found in the first place. So, consider all of the online accounts that you have opened through the years, and think about whether or not you really need to keep them or not.
Any accounts that you no longer use should be deleted so that the data that’s associated with them will also be removed. And, when it comes to your social media accounts, consider being more cautious about what you share, and perhaps make all of your accounts private so they will be harder to find.
Opt Out of People Search Sites
Another important area to tackle is what’s known as people search websites. These are likely sharing your personal details, such as your contact information and background info, without your consent. However, you can opt out of these sites and tell them that you want your information removed.
Here are three popular people search sites that you should check to see if your information is online for anyone to find:
- Whitepages is probably the most well-known people search site. If you confirm that your information is on there, just visit the Whitepages opt out page for removal instructions.
- Another popular people search site is Been Verified, so again, if your data is on there, take a few minutes to move through the Been Verified opt out directions.
- A third people search site that’s worth checking is Truth Finder. The Truth Finder opt out page will guide you through the process of having your data removed.
Use Strong Passwords and Security Software
In addition to gaining control over where your information is shared, and being careful to avoid oversharing information online, you can also take steps to prevent hackers and cyber attacks that could compromise your personal data.
One way to protect yourself is by setting strong passwords. Use creative passwords that are hard to guess. Make them long, and include numbers, symbols, and uppercase and lowercase letters.
Purchasing security software can also give you greater peace of mind when it comes to keeping your personal information secure because it can help protect you against hackers, viruses, malware, etc. If it can scan your system regularly to check for problems, that’s also really helpful as well.
There are a variety of steps you can take, and tools that you can use, to protect your privacy online. Which strategies are you going to implement right away?