- Before you go online, make sure you are using a secure, password protected, wi-fi connection.
- An unsecured Wi-Fi is completely unprotected. Anyone who has a device (cell phone, tablet, smart TV) within broadcast range of an open Wi-Fi can use it. Hotels generally provide unsecured Wi-Fi access for guests.
- Never check bank account or credit card information or access the app for your bank or credit card from an unsecured Wi-Fi connection.
- Install antivirus software on any device that is able to access the internet. There are many free options available.
- Keep the antivirus software up to date and do regular scans.
- Ignore any calls you get from someone pretending to be from an IT department, claiming they have detected a "problem" with your computer. This is a well-known scam. The scam artist wants to gain access to your computer so they can install malware. Once the malware is installed, your computer will act up - and then the scam artist "IT expert" will require payment to "fix" the problem created by the malware they just installed.
- Be aware of "look alike" websites. Scam artists often create look alike websites with an almost identical web address to a legitimate business or financial institution, in the hopes of tricking you into revealing your personal or financial information.
- Never click on a link in an email from someone you don't recognize.
- Shop only on reputable websites. Before entering personal or payment information, make sure the website is secured.
- Look for the "closed lock" symbol or that the website has "https:" This means the site is using encryption technology to better protect your information.
- Be careful what you download. Hackers now use so-called pirate websites to infect computers, cell phones and other devices. These websites, which provide users with access to pirated copies of movies, music, books, and other copyrighted content, are a major source of dangerous malware that is downloaded onto your device as you access the pirated material.
- Hackers can use the malware to access your bank accounts or even to activate your device's camera without your knowledge and record you and your surroundings.
- Monitor your child's online activity on all devices, including gaming systems, tablets, smart TVs and cell phones, to keep your child safe from online predators.
Online Safety Announcement
Attorney General Stenehjem has partnered with Digital Citizens Alliance to provide a Public Service Announcement about Internet Safety.