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10 ways to keep your online data secure

It's easy to accidentally give away too much information online. Read our top 10 tips to make sure your private data doesn't get into the wrong hands and stays secure.

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10 ways to keep your online data secure

  1. 1. Clear Books Must reads | January 2015 10 ways to keep your online data secure Making sure your online data is safe has never been more important. Over half (51%) of respondents to a recent survey, said they had been the victim of some form of cybercrime including fraud, identity theft and hacking — leading to losses of over £670 million per year.
  2. 2. Clear Books Must reads | January 2015 1. Monitor your social media privacy settings: It’s easy to accidentally reveal too much on social media. Your date of birth, where and when you’re going on holiday or pictures of the really expensive computer you recently bought can all be a goldmine for potential scammers or thieves. Spend a few minutes updating your privacy settings to make sure you’re not giving away more than you would like. 2. Set up two email addresses: No matter how few companies you give your email address out to, you can’t be sure where it’ll end up. If you’ve received an email that doesn’t look quite right never click on the links. It’s a good idea to have two email addresses: one for private emails (banking, social media, friends and family) and one for promotional emails — making it easier to spot anything unusual. At Clear Books we ensure your data is stored safely in our cloud and regularly evaluate and enhance our security features so you can rest easy that your information is safe. Here are some other tips for keeping your data secure and preventing your personal information from getting into the wrong hands: 3. Use a password keeper: Using the same password everywhere is one of the most dangerous things you can do online — especially if it’s ‘password123’. When creating a password use a combination of letters, numbers and symbols and try not to use recognisable words. They can be a pain to keep track of but services like https://lastpass.com/ or https://clipperz.is/ can securely remember them for you. However if you forget that password they really will be gone forever. Data security
  3. 3. Clear Books Must reads | January 2015 4. Be careful with public wi-fi networks: If you log on to a public wi-fi network in your local cafe, pub or train station, hackers can find out all sorts of personal information within a few moments, for example: https://medium.com/matter/heres-why- public-wifi-is-a-public-health-hazard-dd5b8dcb55e6. If you do use public wi-fi make sure your settings are secure and always make sure you know who owns the network. Here are more tips to stay safe: http://www.lifehacker.co.uk/2014/11/18/stay-safe-public-wi-fi-networks, 6. Protect your system: To prevent unwanted traffic, the very first thing you should do is enable the firewall on your operating system.You should also install anti-virus software which ‘patrols’ your computer by constantly checking for threats and suspicious activity. Make sure you also install all available updates for your operating system and programmes, further reducing the risk of being hacked or loopholes being exploited. 7. Back up everything: In case of fire or your hard drive crashing you need to make sure that all of your files are backed up elsewhere. Cloud services including Clear Books keep your information safe in an external data centre where your information is encrypted for added protection. You can also use an external hard drive or your own personal server. Make sure you enable encryption on these devices and check the security features of any cloud service you use. If you’re asked to submit sensitive information such as passwords or payment details make sure the site is secure. You can verify if the site is safe by checking that the url begins with ‘https://’ and looking for the padlock icon in the address bar at the top of your screen. 5. Check for a secure connection:
  4. 4. Clear Books Must reads | January 2015 8. Be cautious with USB sticks: Be cautious with USB sticks: With cloud sharing becoming more prevalent, the need for USBs is decreasing. If you do need to use one then avoid: sharing, storing sensitive information, or giving them away. USBs are also an easy way for viruses to be installed on your system without your knowledge.This article goes into more detail: http://www.wired.com/2014/07/usb-security/ They’re also very easy to lose. 10. Be shady yourself: Other simple tricks to reduce online risk include: browsing in incognito or private mode or even using anonymous browser Tor; taking advantage of websites that let you check out as an anonymous guest; and providing fake information to security questions like ‘what’s your mother’s maiden name?’ — just make sure you remember the false answer yourself. 9. Secure empty your trash: Have you ever wondered where your deleted items actually go? Well, the answer is — nowhere. They’re just ‘marked for trash’.The file doesn’t move even when you empty your trash; it gets gradually overwritten by other files but is still recoverable. Macs have a built in ‘secure empty’ option which actively overwrites the file with zeros. If you use a PC, apps such as Eraser can perform this function. We hope this factsheet has been helpful to you. If you have any questions about how we at Clear Books ensure the safety of your data, just give our support team a call on +44 (0)20 3475 4744 or email: support@clearbooks.co.uk