Internet Security article and tips for Windows users

Every day new and newer threats appear on the Internet. While earlier, one had to only worry about virus infections, we now have to face a whole new bunch of issues like Browser Hijackers, Rogue Software, Botnets, Ransomware, Phishing, Identity Thefts, Tabnabbing, Pastejacking and other forms of malware or malicious activities. While Windows 10/8/7 is secure and when fortified by a good security software to protect it, chances of being infected are near-nil – nowadays, in many cases, user intervention is asked for, and we inadvertently end up clicking a ‘Yes’,  resulting in a malware infection. This article on Internet Security offers some basic tips for Windows user, some precautions they should take, to stay safe online.

Internet Security article

Internet Security article & tips

Here are some simple yet effective tips that everyone should take care of while surfing the net.

1] First and foremost, always use a reputed and known security software and firewall and don’t fall for fake security solutions. Use a good anti-virus software or better still an Internet Security Suite. Always also make sure that all your installed software is up to date especially your operating system, security software and browser. Also, use some good free VPN software, if you can. You might also want to read this post on how to secure Windows PC. Also take a look at these free Internet Privacy Software.

2] Always use caution while giving out your email IDs to other sites (or people). These sites could spam you or even sell the email list to the third party, which can spam you. Always read their privacy statement first. If you can’t find one, then that’s another reason not to give them your email address.

3] Use strong passwords. Don’t use your name or simply the word ‘password’ or something that people can easily guess such as your date of birth. Hackers now use a method called social engineering which basically means that they stalk a user online by using Facebook, etc. to find important details about them and try to figure out the password using those details. The best method is to use a non-dictionary word that is a combination of upper case and lower case letters with digits. Do not use the same password for all of your accounts. Otherwise, if a hacker can guess the password of one of your accounts, the rest of your accounts will also be compromised.

4] Never click on anything you didn’t ask for, whether they are emails or web pages. This could be the trigger or the requested human intervention asked for by the malware to set foot on your computer. A simple rule to follow: If in doubt – don’t!

5] Make sure that you have set your  computer, tablet, smartphone or any other device to lock after a particular of idele time.

6] Be cautious of whom you befriend on social networks like Facebook, and do take the time to understand its privacy settings so that you know what you are sharing with others. Check out this guide on how to safeguard your Facebook account.

7] Don’t download pirated videos, movies, programs, cracks, etc. from torrents. That is not only illegal, but the number one source for Trojans and other malware that could potentially harm your computer.

8] Be careful where you download from, preferring only safe software download sites, and in any case never click Next Next blindly during installation. Opt out of bundled software, if any are offered.

9] Take care while logging into online accounts. Harden their privacy settings.

10] Make sure your Windows device privacy settings are hardened.

11] Learn how to prevent ransomware and stay protected, and what to do if you are infected with ransomware. Know about the anti-ransomware software to use and the Ransomware Decryption Tools to use to unlock your files.

12] The dangers of IoT are yet to filter down to the public. Be aware of them and learn how to secure your Internet of Things devices. More deadly is IoT Ransomware!

Following these tips and using some common sense while surfing, will definitely improve your chances of staying safe online. Download this Online Safety Tips Guide for Seniors.

Have any more tip? Please do share below for the benefit of all.

[Post updated in Jan 2017]

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Anand Khanse is the Admin of, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.