Internet Safety part 3 "Tips for Safer Browsing"

Icarus gr By Icarus gr, 20th Jan 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/79yunnpg/
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Web>Usability

This article is about browsing. Provides tips to be more secure when browsing on the web.

Intro

In this third part, we will walk through internet browsing. This article will provide tips and suggestions for a safer internet surfing and in every new part you will find more advances ways to keep your computer in good health.

Internet browsing can be tricky, but with some training could be transformed into a powerful source of knowledge, entertaining, communications and a good assistant for your (not only) everyday tasks.

Feel free to visit the two previous parts here http://www.wikinut.com/internet-safety-part-1/ktwnklth/16ugme2r/ and here http://www.wikinut.com/internet-safety-part-2%3a-the-first-simple-steps/2g00jims/445199do/.

Internet is a tool

As I’ve already said, internet is a tool and you have to treat it like one; Respect it, do not fear it. A good way is to use what you already know and the best way is to ask. After all, no one knows everything and asking is a sign of culture and civilization.

Be careful, if you visit a new (to you) site. To check which company owns this particular site is a good start. Check the term of use and the privacy sector. Secondly, you can search in your internet security software site, to find if the questioned site is with the good or the bad guys. For example Norton has a service, free of charge, so you can check if a site is safe.

Another source are the forums (online discussion site), but, keep in mind, that not all of them can be trusted about the objectivity of their opinion. Be extremely cautious.

Search engines (SE)

You are in the middle of the ocean. There is nothing, but blue skies for miles. You cannot see anything around, except from tones of water. You are on panic, as you are drawing in a sea of information. Suddenly, an arrow appears and shows the right way. Well, that arrow is your Search Engine!

SE is a very powerful tool and you have to learn and remember same basic tips. First of all, you have to use words that are unique for your subject. For better results, try to rephrase with different words, or use synonyms. A very nice trick is to use some symbols, like plus (+), or minus (-), to include or exclude respectively a word from your results. For example, “car+red” will give you cars that must be red and “car-red” will give cars with various colors except red.

Other useful tips are to use the all-time-classic “*”, after a space to let your SE to complete your keywords, the “~” symbol to find similar words, or synonyms, the “OR” factor to have result s about two different things (i.e. “cars blue OR red) and to search for an exact phrase type the phrase within double quotes. Also you can use the “filetype:” factor to have results about a particular file type (i.e. filetype:jpg).

There are so many features in every SE, so let me give you a homework; Search in your favorite SE for similar features and post them as a comment.

When you search something, the very first thing that you have to do is to check the address of the result. This will give you some info about the source of the result and how much safe is (so, if the result’s address is something like “click_to_catch_a_virus.com”, just do not click it).

In this point I have to mention a really cool – free – software, from McAffe, called “siteadvisor. It is easy to use, as you just install it, and a good start up point to say if a site is safe, because the software appears signs near the result, about the safety of the tested site. In addition, it works with the majority of the SE.

Downloading

But, what is the first thing that comes in your mind, when you think of internet? Yes, that’s right; downloading.

Downloading is the key feature that puts internet in our lives. From a picture to a driver and from an update to an email downloading is the most common task in the internet. What dangers can a download hide? How can we be (more) secure when downloading?

First things first, downloading (to receive data from a remote to a local system, that is) is not bad, but the quality of the data themselves. So the question is if the site that provides the data can be trusted. In addition, we have to be sure if the link that provides the download is from that site (or is a so-called external link).

The second question is about the file type. Is an executable (exe, com) or a compressed (zip, rar, 7z, iso, etc) file? Is a picture (bmp, jpg, gif, etc) or a sound (mp3, wav, etc.) file?

Generally, after the download, you have to virus-check the file(s). Also, is good, to check the file size, as it can provide useful information. For example, if you want to download a video file with, let’s say, three minutes of length, you expect that the file might have about 150-200Mb, so if the file, that you have found, has 65Kb, just don’t download it and if you did, then do not run it.

Drivers and updates

Be (very very) extremely (did I mention extremely?) cautious when downloading drivers (a translator between a hardware and your operation system), as interacts directly both your device and your operation system. Download driver only from the official website of the producer, or let your OS to search and download the proper driver(s).

Same things go for the updates. If bad files used like updates and/or drivers, it can be a fatal issue.

Finaly

Thank you, once again, for reading and please be patient for the next part that will be about email. Remember that is better to be cautious, than sorry.
Have a nice day

Tags

Browser Tips, Safe Browsing, Safety, Safety Tips, Tips And Tricks

Meet the author

author avatar Icarus gr
I was born and raised in Greece in 1982. I write since my teenage years. I call myself a fantasy writer and a semi-professional photographer. (http://www.expertscolulmn.com/)

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