2022 is upon us, as is the yearly ritual of setting and forgetting those pesky New Year’s resolutions. There are always things we can improve upon: Eat better, exercise more, take time for friends and family, work on our hobbies. Those things we can’t help you with. But if one of your resolutions for 2022 is to protect yourself and your family better online, there are plenty of tools, tips and easy tricks that can get you started on the right foot.
Cybersecurity Has Never Been More Important
With Cryptocurrencies, NFTs, and the Metaverse dominating headlines as we move into the new year, one thing is clear: Our personal data and digital footprints are more important than ever. A dedicated security suite such as PCMag Editors’ Choice Bitdefender Total Security offers not only the best protection against malware available, but also a range of tools to mitigate ransomware and keep your information safe.
If you’re just using stock-standard Windows Defender on your home PC for example, you’re really only doing the bare minimum to protect your computer from Malware. And that won’t do anything against a sophisticated ransomware attack, which will encrypt and lock down all of your personal files on threat of deletion unless you pay up. These sorts of attacks have become increasingly common over the past few years, and in order to combat them, you need dedicated security software.
Keep Your Software Updated
This sounds obvious, but is easy to forget. As well as improving your software or adding new features, software updates (especially your OS) are extremely important from a security perspective. As cybercriminals find vulnerabilities in software, the software providers release updates that patch those weaknesses, like a game of cat and mouse. Meanwhile, failing to update your software can leave you unsupported by the original developers, and susceptible to a security breach.
Take the time this new year to ensure all the OS, apps and programs on all of your devices are up-to-date; you won’t regret it.
Use a VPN
VPNs are the best way to keep your online activity and data private, and are especially necessary if you work remotely or on the go because they keep your data encrypted. However, while VPNs help you browse online more anonymously, they will not protect you against downloading ransomware, or loading up a dodgy phishing page. This means that VPNs are best when used in tandem with other antivirus software. In fact, many cybersecurity companies, such as the aforementioned Bitdefender, bundle a VPN into their security suites. You can read more about the Bitdefender VPN here.