Many web users believe that having a CA certificate is up to the business they are purchasing from. After all, if you go on their website, is the onus not on them to provide cyber security?
Unfortunately, this isn’t entirely true, as anyone with a computer is more or less at risk.
Aside from using online stores, what else do you do online? While e-commerce sites may use advanced security, other websites do not. Because of this, it’s up to you to ensure there is a certain level of security and caution on your own end.
A recent study at Brigham Young University found students ignored warning signs about potentially malicious websites, only reacting when a skull and crossbones graphic appeared on their screens. While this was faked as part of the study, the implications are genuine; why ignore your firewall until it’s too late?
As a result, it almost doesn’t matter if the big businesses invest in data security and Secure Sockets Layer qualifications. If you’re browsing dangerously, you’re putting your own computer at risk. This is likely to contain as much data – if not more – than any one online store. If you want to keep your laptop or computer safe, invest in some security of your own.
On a similar note, e-mail scams are still quite common, with old tricks like phishing still able to get some people. Just like the Brigham Young study, people often open attachments without scanning or checking them. There are few certificates available in e-mail, but you can always look up the website that it came from (don’t open the attached file until you trust where it came from).
Alongside an active firewall and anti-malware scanning software, some common sense can go a great way. You don’t put your financial data on a website without a Secure Sockets Layer, so why do this by e-mail?
There are many forms of scams. From phishing, which aims to convince you to hand over sensitive data, to simply misleading you with false information to get you to perform a certain action – you should always be checking your sources.
All in all, it’s not just the big businesses that need to invest in anti-viral software and CA certificates. If you value your computer safety, invest in some better protection and be careful where you go on the World Wide Web.