The millennial generation is always online and enjoys their virtual life. Be it being active on social networks or making digital payments, we do end up spending a lot of time on this digital means of communication but is our virtual life safe and private or are we being watched by someone out there? It is a very tricky question but we must ensure our own privacy at a very basic level so that we do not become a victim of online fraud and vandalism.
For starters, as we have a lot of different accounts, we must ensure that we put in different passwords for different accounts. This is the most necessary step to ensure privacy of our virtual lives but most of fail to do so since one password is easy to remember. In case you cannot remember, then use a good password manager app - a lot of them are available for free now. If you’re using a password manager, you just need to memorise one single password that locks the password manager itself. Also, generate online passwords and note them down in a notebook / notepad. They are more secure compared to your generic ones.
Next up, turn on two-factor authentication. It is kind of painful as it takes away some extra minutes to get work done but you end up securing your account. It is very useful if you’re making online payments. Also, a lot of services like Gmail, Dropbox, Evernote and others offer two-factor authentication. Do use passcodes wherever possible, even if they are optional. Do not hesitate in using the fingerprint sensor if you have one in your smartphone. They are more secure than passcodes. Keep it simple but do not use one email address for all accounts. Use separate Email IDs for work and personal use. So, if you’re making a social media account, use your personal email and for official accounts like Linkedin, use your work email.
We live in the age of social media and messaging apps. Hence, we should use apps and services which provide solid encryption. Do not use a lot of messaging apps, use a centralised app to keep everything at one place. In this technologically advanced era, everyone starting from ISP (Internet Service Providers) to advertisers or NSA, is keeping track of our web activities. So, use a VPN (Virtual Private Network) to minimize the damage. Depend more on cloud computing for ensuring better privacy.
Some last minute tips would be to maintain a minimalistic online life, which means cleaning up your inbox, unsubscribing from Email lists, use websites that use HTTPS encryption and not using unsecured browser plug-ins.
We really hope that you lead a happy private virtual life by following these basic steps. If you have some other suggestions for our readers on how to ensure privacy in this online world, feel free to drop in your comments down below. Until next time, stay careful and have a good day.