5 min read

Have you ever worried about how to protect your online privacy? Well, you're not alone. Protecting the activity and ensuring the security of personal data when surfing is one of the biggest problems for Internet users. And these are legitimate concerns. Hackers and scammers are part of online life. But the good news is that a little effort can go a long way to protecting your online privacy.

How to briefly improve Online Privacy

Some of the easiest ways to protect your online privacy are: using a password manager, using a good VPN, enabling two-factor authentication, being aware of phishing attacks, updating software, and using antivirus software.

  1. Use a password manager
  2. Enable two-factor authentication
  3. Limit the information you share online
  4. Beware of phishing
  5. Change any hacked logins
  6. Always update your software
  7. Get antivirus software
  8. Use a browser instead of a special application
  9. Use the Privacy browser
  10. Switch to a more private search engine
  11. Use a good paid VPN

1. Use a password manager

Password managers are a very convenient tool for protecting yourself on the network. If you have never used it, we strongly recommend that you purchase it.

Good password managers work by securely storing and encrypting all your online passwords in one place that is accessible only to you. This means that you can have completely different, extremely strong passwords for each service without having to remember them all.

Another great feature of password managers is that most of them can automatically generate a strong password for you, so you will never have to try to meet all the complex criteria of numbers, symbols and letters.

The best password managers are:

NordPass

2. Enable two-factor authentication

Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a great way to add an extra layer of protection to your online accounts, if they support it. After activation, you will need to enter your password, and then confirm your identity using another method, such as an app, email or SMS.

The second level of security offered by 2FA makes it much more difficult for hackers to access your accounts, since they will need to hack more systems and / or devices. Sometimes it may seem uncomfortable, but it should give you extra peace of mind when you are surfing.

3. Limit the information you share online

Being careful with what you share on the Internet will require a constant understanding of how you approach the use of the Internet, but perhaps this is the most effective way to ensure the security of your information. After all, if there is nothing confidential on the network, no one will be able to steal or use it for other purposes.

The most obvious and relevant example of limiting what you share concerns social networks. In fact, people share confidential data so often in comments, messages, images and videos on social networks that some cybercriminals hunt exclusively for the theft of such information.

Therefore, always think twice before publishing anything that can be used in phishing, such as contact details, your address, financial information, etc. And never, ever share your login details with anyone!

4. Beware of phishing

Phishing is a rapidly growing form of online fraud, where people trick you into providing them with confidential information.

This type of fraud involves contacts by email, phone or SMS with someone posing as a legitimate organization, for example, a bank, government or any other business. They may then ask you to follow a link to a fake website that looks like a real one, where you will be asked to enter details such as your password or credit card details.

It can be difficult to avoid such scams, so the most important thing is to know that they exist and always be vigilant. Before clicking on the link or entering your card details, double-check whether the link is valid, beware of anything that implies urgency or immediate action, and never tell anyone your PIN codes or passwords.

5. Change any compromised logins

Hackers around the world are constantly trying to steal information from all sorts of sources. In these attacks, user credentials are often stolen.

Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to completely avoid the risk of login data theft, and even large companies such as Facebook and LinkedIn can suffer. The first thing you can do to protect yourself is to stay up to date with events, for example, using an automatic notification service. If you know that a compromise has occurred, you can immediately change your registration data, block or cancel your credit card, or take any other actions necessary to protect you.

Check if your accounts have been breached:

Check your email address (or addresses if you have multiple) on Have I Been Pwned or email security tool Surfshark Alert. If you find compromised accounts, change passwords – and make sure they’re strong!

In addition, other useful online practices, such as using 2FA and regularly changing passwords, can help you.

6. Always update your software

Software updates are important. Performing the update process regularly may seem like a waste of time, but it's usually not just about changing the appearance of your software. Often, companies release updates to fix bugs and fix vulnerabilities in their services, so refusing to update can make you vulnerable.

We recommend checking regularly for updates and always updating immediately whenever possible if you want to stay as safe as possible online.

7. Get antivirus software

Viruses, malware and adware are widespread on the Internet, and some of them are specifically designed to steal your confidential data, so you should consider purchasing antivirus software if you don't already have it.

Microsoft and Apple offer their own products, both of which are good options, or you can choose another vendor. However, it is extremely important that you use a good, proven provider. Some of the biggest and most trusted names in the business are BullGuard, McAfee, Avira and Norton, but you should do your own research before choosing.

BullGuard Antivirus Software

8. Use a browser instead of a dedicated app

Currently, we all use a number of apps, but using apps can compromise your data, which you don't even know about. For example, fake apps are a real problem, and many people download them themselves. In addition, apps usually require many permissions, such as access to your files and media, camera, contact lists - even if this app does not need them. To work around these problems, we recommend that you try to access the services through the browser whenever possible.

9. Use the Privacy browser

Some browsers are much better at protecting your online privacy than others. For example, Chrome, the most popular browser in the world, collects and uses your data for money, like many others, so they may not be an ideal choice. If you really care about your online privacy, consider switching to a browser focused on privacy and security.

10. Switch to a more private search engine

Like browsers, some search engines are not very good if you care about online privacy. For example, Google sells your data to advertisers, and many other search engines work on a similar model. One way to get around this is to clear the history and cookies after each session. Another way is to use a private search service, for example, Surfshark Search (a powerful & lightweight search tool that only displays purely organic results. Perform web search queries in complete privacy with no ads, no logs, and no trackers).

11. Use a good paid VPN

Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are an effective way to protect your data online. However, not all VPNs are as good as others. Free options are often extremely insecure, and they make money using your data in various ways. We always recommend using a reliable and paid VPN service to provide you with maximum online protection. The best VPNs are ExpressVPNSurfsharkPureVPN and NordVPN.