From its beginnings in the 1990s to the present day, the World Wide Web has opened up new opportunities and given rise to new industries. Its expansion has been so great, and it is unlikely that a similar phenomenon will soon emerge in the technology world that will change the lives of humanity the way the Internet did. But despite its good points, this connectivity has also brought new threats.

Spam infiltrated email accounts and computer viruses attacked business networks. The biggest enemy of the Internet – hacking – has emerged. Business secrets, bank account details and even people’s identities are at risk. Today, we’ve chosen to introduce you to some of the most important ways you can protect your computer from bad actors, according to Business News Daily.

Use a firewall to secure your computers from hackers
Windows and macOS have built-in firewalls — software designed to create a barrier between your information and the outside world. Firewalls prevent unauthorized access to your business network and alert you to intrusion attempts.

Ensure the firewall is enabled before going online. You can also purchase a hardware firewall from companies like Cisco, Sophos or Fortinet, depending on your broadband router, which also has a built-in firewall that protects your network. If you have a larger business, you can purchase an additional business networking firewall.


Install antivirus software to thwart hackers
Antivirus software is a small business cybersecurity necessity. Computer viruses and malware are everywhere. Antivirus programs like Bitdefender, Panda Free Antivirus, Malwarebytes, and Avast protect your computer against unauthorized code or software that may threaten your operating system. Viruses may have easy-to-spot effects — for example, they might slow your computer or delete critical files — or be less conspicuous.

Antivirus software plays a major role in protecting your system by detecting real-time threats to ensure your data is safe. Some advanced antivirus programs provide automatic updates, further protecting your machine from the new viruses that emerge daily.

After installing an antivirus program, don’t forget to use it. Run or schedule regular virus scans to keep your computer virus-free.

Install an antispyware package to protect your business
Spyware is software that secretly monitors and collects personal or organizational information. It’s hard to detect and remove and usually delivers unwanted ads or search results intended to direct you to specific (often malicious) websites. Some spyware records every keystroke to gain access to passwords and other financial information.

Antispyware concentrates exclusively on this threat but is often included in major antivirus packages, including Webroot, McAfee, and Norton. Antispyware packages provide real-time protection by scanning all incoming information and blocking threats.

Use complex passwords to prevent network intrusions
Using strong passwords is a crucial way to prevent network intrusions. The more secure your passwords are, the harder it is for hackers to invade your system.

Secure passwords are usually longer and more complex. Use a password with at least eight characters and a combination of numbers, uppercase and lowercase letters, and computer symbols. Hackers have an arsenal of tools to break short, easy passwords in minutes.

Don’t use recognizable words or combinations representing birthdays or other information hackers can connect to you. Don’t reuse passwords, either. If you have too many passwords to remember, consider using a password manager, such as Dashlane, Sticky Password, LastPass, or Password Boss.

Keep your OS, apps and browser updated
Always install operating system updates. Most updates include security fixes that prevent hackers from accessing and exploiting your data. The same goes for apps.

Today’s web browsers are increasingly sophisticated, especially regarding privacy and security. Review your browser security settings in addition to installing all new updates. For example, you can use your browser to prevent websites from tracking your movements, which increases your online privacy. You can also use a private browsing mode or install a browser specifically focused on security, like DuckDuckGo or Epic Privacy Browser.

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