I seem to be posting a lot less frequently recently. I was traveling, work has been crazy busy, you know how it goes. Oh, well.
I was looking at some stuff while I was traveling, and reviewing what I thought, and decided it still holds, so I decided to post it here.
It ain't perfect, but then nothing is, and besides which you get what you paid for, so here are my 100% free of charge simple rules for online security:
- Always do your banking and other important web accesses from your own personal computer, not from public computers like those in hotel business centers, coffee shops, etc.
- Always use Chrome or Firefox to access "important" web sites like the bank, credit cards, Amazon, etc.
- Always use https:// URLs for those web sites
- Always let Windows Update automatically update your computer as it wants to, also always let Chrome and Firefox update themselves when they want to.
- Stick with GMail, it's about as secure as email can get right now. Train yourself to be suspicious of weird mails from unknown senders, or with weird links in them, just in case you get a "phishing" mail that pretends to be from your bank or credit card company, etc.
- If you get a mail from a company you care about (bank, retirement account, credit card, health care company, etc.), instead of clicking on the link in the mail, ALWAYS open up a new browser window and type in the https:// URL of the bank or whatever yourself. It's clicking the link in the email that gets you in trouble.
- At least once a week or so, sign on and look at your credit card charges, your bank account, your retirement account, etc., just to see that everything on there looks as it should be. If not, call your bank and credit card company, dispute the charge, and ask them to send you a new credit card, ATM card, whatever it was.
- Don't accept phone calls from people who aren't in your contacts, or whose call you didn't expect. If you accept a phone call that you think might be legitimate (e.g., from your bank or credit card company), but you need to discuss your account, hang up and call them back, using the main service number from their web site, not the number that called you. Never answer "security questions" over the phone unless you initiated the call yourself. Con artists that call you on the phone can be really persuasive, this is actually the biggest threat nowadays I think.