With an 89% increase in UK cybercrime between 2020 and 2022, it has become increasingly important for people to become more educated about their cyber safety. 

 Cyber criminals steal data including credit card information, and the emails and contact lists of their victims. If you are careful and informed, you give yourself the best chance of staying clear of this sort of theft. 

 Why do you need to protect your personal data?

 The most pressing reason to protect your personal data is to avoid being the victim of financial crimes. Your financial identity is an extremely important thing to keep secure.

 If you do not protect your personal data, you could be the victim of financial theft or even identity theft, with criminals using your information to protect their own identities. 

 Criminals can find out a lot about you from your stolen personal data, even how much money you earned last year, or your browsing history. This information is often then sold to third parties, who may use it to target you for anything from advertising to phishing scams.

 Here are some measures you can take to make sure your data stays safe while you browse.

Use a VPN

What is a VPN?

A VPN hides your IP address and protects your data. Whenever you connect to the Internet using a public WiFi network, someone can look through your files and steal your data without you knowing.

 A VPN encrypts your internet traffic by routing it through a server owned by the VPN company. This means that nobody can access your data.

Who needs a VPN?

A VPN will increase the online safety of anyone using it, but if you use public WiFi, you should absolutely consider securing your data with a VPN. 

Use Multi-factor Authentication

Although multi-factor authentication takes a bit of extra time to set up, it makes it much harder for criminals to access your accounts and steal your personal data. 

Multi-factor authentication verifies your identity using two or more forms of authentication - for example:

  • Fingerprint ID
  • Face ID
  • Mobile phone number
  • Email address
  • Access to other verified accounts

For example, you might be texted a secret code and asked for a Face ID in order to access a specific service from a new device.

This stops hackers from being able to access your account with just your password. Passwords can be relatively easy to find, with software that tries endless combinations of letters and numbers automatically. Multi-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security to that.

Use biometric authentication

Biometric authentication is a security measure that uses the unique biological characteristics of individuals to verify that they have permission to access an account or device. Examples include Face ID and fingerprint ID. 

Using biometric authentication is a little bit more secure than using a strong password but remember that a lot of devices also allow a PIN code if the biometric authentication is unsuccessful. 


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