Want to Be Anonymous Online? Incognito v. VPN

Maybe you want to be a little mysterious, but more likely you want to protect your privacy when browsing online. You don’t want cybercriminals seeing what you’re doing, or marketers knowing where you go online and what you search for. So, you anonymize your activity using Incognito mode or private browsing. Really though, you want to be using a virtual private network (VPN).

It's likely you want to protect your privacy when browsing online

Google Chrome's Incognito mode helps maintain your privacy when you are online. Other browsers, such as  Safari, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, or Internet Explorer, also offer private browsing. When the feature is at work, the browser does not save a record of the websites you visit or what you what you searched for. Plus, it doesn’t save any of your site logins. This means you have to do without the convenience of access credentials auto-populating.

Privacy browsing also disables plugins that may be used to track your internet activity. Still, plugins often serve a purpose while we’re on the internet. So, again, disabling them can disrupt your convenient, efficient browsing experience.

Yet, as cybersecurity concerns rise, recognizing privacy concerns while browsing may not be enough. For one thing, hiding your browser activity is only half the battle. You should also know that:

your internet service provider (ISP) may be monitoring the sites you visit;

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How to Avoid Online Job Search Scams

Cybercrooks are disturbing people. Consider job-search scams. With the world economy reeling, bad actors are capitalizing on people’s desperation. They’re targeting those looking for work. There are steps you can take to filter out illegitimate opportunities.

There has been an increase in job scams in 2020

Cybercriminals like to be timely. Plus, appealing to people’s emotions improves their success rate, so it’s not that surprising that there’s been an uptick in job-listing scams in 2020.

Avoid Job Search Scams Online

The bad guys are betting people will be less cautious when they see an attractive job offer. Don’t be their victim. Take these steps instead.

Read the job description carefully

This means:

  • Looking for grammatical or spelling errors. As with other cyberscams, someone who is not a native speaker of the posting’s language may write the listing.
  • Being wary of phrases designed to communicate urgency or a too-good-to-be-true offer. You wouldn't expect to see “quick earning potential” or “unlimited money” in a legit posting.
  • Search for specificity. A legitimate listing will list job responsibilities and industry credentials. Someone faking it is less likely to be able to use the industry vocabulary.

Be wary of instant hiring

No matter the industry, few positions are filled immediately. You should expect the recruiting process to take time. If you are being pressured to take hiring steps urgently, that should be a red flag. Get an email congratulating you on earning the position before you’ve met with anyone? Proceed with caution.

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Remote IT Will Create Tech That Works for You

Cloud technology
has grown to new heights in recent years. Ten years ago 'the cloud' was jargon
almost nobody was aware of, today it is a phrase used almost daily in offices
worldwide.  More and more businesses today are taking advantage of the huge
benefits cloud services have to offer.

The sudden and widespread adoption of this new technology has raised questions too.  Some want to fully understand what the cloud is before committing their vital company data to it.  Most want to find out what the cloud can do for them. Everyone wants to know, is it safe?

More businesses are taking advantage of the huge benefits cloud services have to offer.

What Is The Cloud?

The Cloud is an
abstract name for an engineering principle that allows you to store, retrieve,
and work on your data without worrying about the specifics of precisely where
or how it is kept.  Storing your data on the cloud essentially means saving it
on a server without worrying about the fine details.

Your data may be
stored on a single computer, or distributed across multiple servers all around
the world.  Most often it's stored across one or more data centers as close as
possible to your physical location.

From the
perspective of the end user, the big idea behind the cloud is that where data
is stored ultimately doesn't matter to you.  Your cloud server takes care of
retrieving your data as quickly and efficiently as possible.

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PSSST… Are You Protected Against Leakware?

You’ve heard about ransomware by now. Cybercriminals access and encrypt your data. You have to pay a “ransom” for the key to unlock it. Leakware is similar, but now the bad actors are threatening to post confidential information online if you don’t pay up.

Leakware is threatening to post confidential information online

When you think about it, there are probably many things your business wouldn’t want to be shared publicly. This could be your IP, your secret sauce recipe, your customer database with all the details, or financial data: the works.

Who are the Victims?

The public sector is particularly at risk against leakware, also known as extortionware. Attackers threaten to publish confidential citizen data online. Healthcare organizations are also top targets, with the bad actors saying they will publish the stolen sensitive data online.

Leakware doesn’t just affect you and your business. It can hurt all the people whose data is leaked. That information makes citizens or customers more likely to be victims of fraud or identity theft.

As with ransomware, leakware is costly. Beyond the actual ransom paid, you could pay associated costs such as:

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Are You Banking Online Safely?

Banks and
credit card companies are making it easier for us to get money on the go. We
can check account balances, pay bills, and transfer funds online. We no longer
even have to go into a bank or visit an ATM to deposit checks. But are you
banking online safely?

Are you banking online safely?

PIN Numbers

In the past,
all we had to do was protect our PIN number (and remember it). Now, we need a
mobile account password, too. The first precaution you can take is to have a strong,
unique password. Can you believe that “password,” “123456,” and “letmein”
remain common access credentials? Don’t do it! Also, avoid using things that a
cybercriminal might guess or be able to learn from your social media. This
eliminates anniversaries and birth dates, pets, and children’s names.

Don’t reuse
your banking password anywhere else. Sure, if you duplicate the password, it’s
easier for you to remember, but, a bad actor could access your credentials for
another site. Then, they have that same email and password combo to use to try
on your banking or credit card site, too.

It’s also not
a good idea to write down your passwords or keep track of them on a note in
your phone. If you’re worried about remembering all your passwords, consider a
password manager. A high-quality password manager can be a safe way to keep
your passwords secret yet available. Top password managers use secure
encryption for your access credentials.

Use only Secured Devices

Make sure
you’re only banking using your own, secured devices. This means don't check
your balance or whether a payment cleared while in line at the coffee shop or
in the airport. Don’t risk banking using a public Wi-Fi network that a hacker
could be accessing to steal sensitive data. You also want to avoid using shared
computers to login to your financial data. A cybercafe or library computer
could have a keylogger that tracks your login details for criminal use.

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