Security Tips When Browsing Online

March 10, 2017


Despite your team's best efforts to keep your network secure, in many ways the Internet is still the Wild Wild West. Between the security vulnerabilities found in software and plug-ins to malvertising campaigns and ransomware online surfing can still pose a danger to your company. Lucky for you, Auditmacs is here with a few tips to help keep you safe while browsing.

Let's start with your browser. If you haven't updated your browsing software in a while, you'll definitely want to do so immediately. With every update your browser gets new security patches which protect it from harm. On the other side of the equation are the writers of malicious code. They purposefully look for unpatched holes in your browser and that is how they get in. Some of these programs are even vicious enough to take full control of your computer. By regularly running software updates you'll stay on top of your bug fixes and drastically reduce this risk.

Now that your browser is in a better state, it's time to take a look at your browser plug-ins. Plug-ins such as Java, Flash, Adobe Reader, and Silverlight can really enhance your browsing experience. But just like your browser, they're prone to security vulnerabilities. To prevent malicious code from infecting your network, set your updates on auto-pilot to stay updated in real-time.

Sadly your system isn't the only one you need to worry about being secure. Malvertising campaigns exploit the security holes in common third-party advertising providers. They insert their code in the form of fake ads to trick users into clicking and downloading infected files. The best way to combat these is via a browser-native ad blocker. Do your homework before installing one on your browser. Chrome and Firefox both have recommended applications you can use. At the time of this writing, Adblock Plus and Disconnect are both pretty great.

Lastly we'll touch on passwords. An insecure or overused password is often the biggest vulnerability of any user. Though it is best to use different passwords for each site and to change them often, we're human and we forget. Try using a password management program such as Lastpass or KeePass which are secure and automatically generate passwords for you.