Email Security: Five Tips to Protect Yourself

E-mail can be a terrific form of communication for keeping in touch with family, friends, and business associates. However, using it unwisely may make you and your computer susceptible to spam, scams, and viruses. Here are five tips to avoid these problems:

Utilize Security Software

A decent security program with a firewall should be your first line of defense when using a PC. It should come as no surprise that comprehensive security programs are necessary to protect PCs against spam, viruses, worms, Trojans, etc. Even for email, security software can protect against the malicious software hiding in email attachments.

Be Smart When Opening Attachments

After a relative, friend, or business associate’s email has been hacked, it’s possible you will receive a message from them with an attachment. That attachment can contain worms, viruses, or Trojans, but you wouldn’t know better because it’s coming under the disguise as a message from someone you know and trust. If you need to download attachments from emails, install a security software first to protect your PC.

Avoid Phishing Scams

Whenever you receive an email from a trusted service you use like a bank or social network, always avoid clicking on the links in the email. While there are certainly exceptions to this rule, such as receiving an email confirmation message where you are required to click the link, hackers and other individuals looking to steal your information can disguise themselves as a service you trust and ask for personal information. It is almost always safer to visit the website manually.

Use Separate Email Accounts

Utilizing a single email account for work, newsletters and Facebook updates is like putting all of your eggs in one basket. If you were to lose access to this basket, you will lose all of your eggs. Utilize separate email accounts with unique passwords for work and personal emails. Utilizing separate email accounts for separate uses will not only improve your security it will also improve your productivity. You will no longer be distracted from your work by a new Facebook update.

Avoid Public WiFi

As tempting as it may be, avoid checking your work email while connected to public Internet. Public Internet can often be insecure and linked to hackers. Hackers can utilize tools known as “network sniffers” to keep track of all the traffic and information traveling through a public WiFi router to obtain personal information such as login credentials.

For more information about email security and other topics regarding network solutions, contact us today.

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