The lack of digital hygiene can have implications in the form of threats to your privacy and affect your physical and emotional health. Your digital security largely depends on incorporating good habits in your online actions.
At Smowltech, we know the dangers of living in a hyperconnected society and the risks you can expose yourself to in an online environment. For this reason, we will explain what digital hygiene is and why it is so important to take care of it.
What is Digital Hygiene?
Digital hygiene comprises a series of resources and recommendations to protect people’s digital identity and the associated data. It is also aimed at preserving their health from the harmful effects of constant exposure to stimuli.
Digital hygiene is also known as cyber hygiene.
By digital identity, you should understand the data about a person, company, or electronic device collected on the internet.
This includes information such as any type of personal data you provide that is not protected, online transactions, reactions to any posts, or even opinions and recommendations you may make.
Just as in your daily life, you incorporate good lifestyle habits to take care of your physical health, it is essential to know how to protect your digital identity’s health from the dangers you face when using any type of internet-connected device.
In this way, it is impossible to dissociate digital hygiene from users’ digital security.
Why is it important to care for Digital Hygiene?
As we just mentioned, security in ICT is more than necessary to preserve your digital hygiene and avoid falling prey to cyberattacks with consequences as damaging as:
- Security breaches include phishing, malware or virus infections, extortion for the theft of confidential information, identity theft, credentials theft, etc.
- Destruction or corruption of stored information on hard drives and cloud systems without proper protection.
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Regarding your physical and emotional health, if you do not take protective measures, you can expose yourself to disastrous consequences such as:
- Digital overstimulation causes stress, anxiety, depression, family detachment, and behavioral disorders.
- Hyperconnectivity means feeling the need to be constantly connected or believing that you must respond immediately to any type of message.
All these consequences occur in professional and personal contexts, so acquiring good digital practices is necessary.
Best practices for maintaining a good Digital Hygiene
Maintaining good digital hygiene is simple, although it does require a series of precautions.
The most significant effort is understanding that your online actions can entail significant risks, so you must always navigate cautiously.
We share a series of recommendations to help you protect your digital identity.
Recommendations for protecting your devices
Any of your devices can become an open door to malicious hacker attacks.
We share with you some precautions you can take:
- Use appropriate protection tools such as firewalls, antivirus, secure password managers, or data removal software.
- Activate multi-factor authentication (MFA) through biometric data, mobile applications, etc.
- Back up your essential files on external hard drives or in the cloud. Always ensure you do it on secure platforms.
- Keep your applications, software, firmware, and operating systems up to date, removing anything you do not use.
- Change any connection’s default name and password, including your Wi-Fi network and router.
- Set up a separate guest network.
- Ensure your router provides encryption that protects privacy, such as WPA2 or WPA3.
Finally, remember that if you are going to sell an electronic device, it is essential to erase all data and format it to prevent access to personal information.
Recommendations for safe browsing
Take note of these tips to avoid falling into the trap of cybercriminals:
- Do not post personal information on any social network or platform.
- Thoroughly configure the privacy settings for all social networks you use, as well as for email providers, subscriptions, etc.
- Do not participate in quizzes, online games, or surveys that ask for personal information.
- Check the permissions of the applications you install, especially free ones.
- Avoid connecting to public Wi-Fi services.
- Verify the security of the websites where you make transactions.
- Do not click on suspicious links from unknown sources or that seem suspicious. If you received them via email, check the sender’s address.
- Do not download attachments from emails or text messages that you were not expecting. If the message refers to official organizations or banks and you need clarification on their authenticity, contact them directly before taking any action.
Recommendations for protecting your health
Regarding health, you can also avoid the negative impact of hyperconnectivity by following some of the following recommendations:
- Respect your work schedule, especially if you work remotely.
- Silence your device when you want to rest, especially at night.
- Engage in non-digital activities in your free time.
- Use technology to serve you, not the other way around.
- Keep a digital journal to become aware of your technology usage. This simple gesture helps you set boundaries.
- Inform your surroundings about your digital limits so that they do not demand constant presence or immediate responses.
Digital Hygiene bonus: 8 tips for creating secure passwords
Since password management is often one of the leading causes of exposure to internet dangers, we have prepared a list that includes 8 tips to help you create a secure password.
- Always change default passwords on any electronic device.
- Do not use the same password for multiple accounts.
- Change passwords regularly.
- When possible, create passwords with at least 12 characters.
- Combine uppercase, lowercase, numbers, and special characters.
- Do not use obvious information linked to you, such as your birthdate, pet’s name, or your own name.
- Do not use sequences of consecutive numbers like 123, 789, 456, etc.
- Do not share your passwords on any digital channels.
At Smowltech, we offer proctoring solutions that contribute to strengthening digital hygiene and the security of your users, always preserving their privacy through innovative solutions.
Do not hesitate to request a free demo; we will show you how to conduct non-invasive, respectful, and effective online supervision.
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