How I Live Safe: 3 Tips for Staying Secure Online

By on Oct 14, 2016

As a security professional, online safety is always on my mind. Especially when I’m using my personal devices, rather than my work devices. I always try to follow a few routine tips and tricks to make sure my personal information stays, well—personal. So like other members of our McAfee family, I wanted to share a few of those best practices with all of you. That way, you can not only learn #HowILiveSafe, but take away a few things that will help you live safe as well. Here are a few to start:

I use a VPN. Whenever I’m traveling, I always try to connect to a VPN (Virtual Private Network). When a device connects to a VPN, it acts as if it’s on the same local network as the VPN. When you browse the Web while connected, your computer contacts whatever website you’re accessing through an encrypted connection. It’s a much more secure alternative to connecting to public Wi-Fi.

I’m careful with posting personal info on social media. It’s fun to share your life with your friends on social media, but it’s not fun when that personal information falls into the wrong hands. So whenever I’m about to post something on social media, I always ask myself first if the post is too revealing, and double check if it contains sensitive information. Remember: online posts are like a permanent marker. What goes online, stays online.

I only use authorized app stores. Apps not found on Google Play or in the Apple App Store are a major mobile security red flag. If apps are not downloadable from official app stores, it means they haven’t been vetted and approved by Google or Apple. Therefore, there’s a major risk involved when downloading that unauthorized app, especially when you have to go through an unauthorized app store to do it. So, I stick to using and downloading apps from authorized app stores only. The potential for malware that comes with using an unauthorized app store just isn’t worth the risk of stepping outside those lines.

Now, these are just a few ways that I personally protect my digital assets every day, but the options are endless. The security industry, too, continues to reveal more advanced solutions for helping users protects themselves and their data. For example, McAfee’s new consumer security lineup features a cloud-based anti-malware engine that uses machine learning to better understand threats and where they come from, so detection is quicker and more efficient. It also includes advanced protection solutions for both iOS and Android devices, as well as tablets, mobile phones, PCs and Macs alike.

Want to learn more about living safe? Check out the #HowILiveSafe hashtag on Twitter, and join the conversation! And of course, stay on top of the latest consumer and mobile security threats by following me and @McAfee_Home on Twitter, and Like us on Facebook.

gary

About the Author

Gary Davis

Gary Davis was previously McAfee's Consumer Security Evangelist providing security education and advice to businesses and consumers. He is a sought-after speaker on trends in digital security, appearing at conferences and events, as well as security and consumer lifestyle broadcast outlets and publications such as ABC, NBC, FOX, the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Money ...

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