Cyber Safety poster, refers to the safe and responsible use of Internet so as to ensure safety and security of personal information and not posing threat to anyone else’s information. It involves gaining knowledge about possible threats to personal safety and security risks for the information along with measures to prevent and counter them.
Thus, you need to know that not every site is safe to visit; whatever you post or do online is visible to others; not everything that you see or is promised online is true. Also, safeguarding your computer is very crucial before you go online. There are some rules you must follow to contact yourself online and there are other things that you must know so that you can counter unknown dangers.
In how many ways websites track you ?
Whenever you visit a website, your web browser may reveal your location via your device’s IP address. It can also provide your search and browsing history etc. which may be used by third parties, like advertising or criminals. Hence this is the way by which websites track you.
The type of information is compiled through your web usage patterns, and which websites generally use for tracking you. This generally includes :
(a) IP Address
IP address is a unique address of your device when you connect to the Internet. It’s likely that your computer shares your IP address with the other networked devices in your house or offices.
(b) Cookies and Tracking Scripts
Cookies are small pieces of information websites can store your browser. They have plenty of legitimate uses- for example when you sign into your online-banking website, a cookie remembers your login information. When you change a setting on a website, a cookie stores that setting also.
Cookie can be :
(i) First party cookies-It store your login id passwords, auto fill information, etc.
(ii) Third party cookies-It know about your search history and web history. It may result in many unwanted ads on your webpages.
(c) HTTP Referrer
When you click a link, your browser loads the web page linked to it and tells the website where you came from. For example, if you clicked a link to an outside website on a webpage then the linked website will get opened and internally information about you such as your IP address, location, your web history, etc will be provided to the linked website – it is known as HTTP Referrer.
(d) Super Cookies
Super cookies are also cookies but there are persistent cookies i.e. they come back event after you delete them. Super cookies store cookie data in multiple places.
(e) User Agent
Your browser also sends a user agent every time you connect to a website. This tells websites your browser and operating system, providing another piece of information that can be stored and used to target ads.
How to protect Identity while using Internet ?
We surf the Internet for a variety of reasons, from using social media, buying and selling goods, to sending information. When we give out private data to businesses and other Internet users(such as while making payment), we trust them to use that information for legitimate purposes. This can’t always the case though and financial and personal data can be used for harmful reasons like hacking, stalking and identity fraud.
Most common solution to this is : Private Browsing or Anonymous Browsing on Internet.
What are Private Browsing and Anonymous Browsing ?
Anonymous browsers allows users to view websites without revealing any personal information of the user like their IP address, machine type, location etc. Anonymous browsers lets users access websites anonymously. It can be used as a tool for governments, journalists and everyday security-conscious surfers.
There is another type of browsing- Private Browsing
There are other ways to use the Internet without revealing your search history and sharing your data. These are :
Incognito Browsing opens up a version of the browser that will not track your activity. It’s particularly useful if you’re entering sensitive data like bank details into the browser, as it can minimise the risk of your information being saved to that computer. You may also use private browsers and search engine like DuckDuckgo
Proxy works by acting as a middleman between your computer and the website you want to access. Now the tracking websites will get the IP address and information that belong to the proxy site, so you are effectively getting the same contents from another source without it getting to know your browsing details
Virtual Private Network or a VPN is a method used to add security and privacy to private and public networks, like WiFi hotspot and the Internet. VPNs are the most often used by corporations to protect sensitive data.
What is Confidentiality of Information ?
Confidentially of information ensures that only authorized users get access to sensitive and protected data. Internet is a public platform, mostly. The sites you visit, the things you search on it, the posts that you put on social networking sites are all visible to public and search engine. But there must be some information like your credit history or bank details, your mails etc., which you don’t want to make public, i.e., you want to keep this information confidential.
How to ensure Confidentiality of Information?
Best practices used to ensure confidentially are as follows :
1.Use firewall wherever possible
Firewall is a program that monitors all communications and traps all illicit packets. Most operating systems now come with a firewall preinstalled.
2.Control browser settings to block tracking
Search engine generally record your queries together with your computer identification, building up a profile of your interests over time. To minimize these threats, you can turn your default browser settings to exclude cookies specially third party cookies.
3.Browse privately wherever possible
To avoid the tracking by websites, you should try to browse Internet privately wherever possible.
4. Be careful while posting on Internet
When you post anything to a public Internet such as social networking sites like Instagram or FB etc., you generally give up the rights to the contents and any expectation of privacy or confidentially is useless. So ensure that you never post your crucial information like your personal details such as address, mobile phone number, bank details, etc., on public Internet Sites.
5. Ensure safe sites while entering crucial information
In such cases, ensure these things :
Type the URL of the website in the address bar of the browser on your own. Don’t click on a link that takes to this website; or do not cut/copy the link of this website and paste it. TYPE THE URL ON YOUR OWN in the address bar.
Ensure that the address contains HTTP and a pad lock sign. When this website gets loaded, before you start typing any information, ensure that the website address. A safe site’s URL starts with https:// and not with http://. Also, it shows a closed pad lock.
6.Carefully handle the emails
While opening an email, make sure that you know the sender. Even if you open the email message by accident, make sure not to open any attachment in an email from unrecognized source.
7. Do not give sensitive information on wireless networks
The reason for this is that most free wireless networks are not encrypted and hence the information on it can be tapped and used for fraudulent process.
8. Avoid using public computers
But if you need to work on a public computers, then make ensure following things