Have you ever wondered how you can be safe on the net? If your answer is no, think again! If you answered yes, then you know the hazards on the net. Premnath Sah T.H.

We know that Internet provides immense data to meet all requirements. But, beware there are places on the net you might not want to be in but may end up being if you are not alert.

Here are a few steps you can take to make sure you are safer on net than before.

1. Choose the right browser

Safe browsing starts with choosing the right browser. We know Internet Explorer (‘blue e' on your desktop) is the browser to surf the net. There are other alternative to it like, Mozilla Firefox (www.getfirefox.com), Opera (www.opera.com), Google Chrome (www.google.com/chrome), Apple Safari (www.apple.com/safari). You might want to use the alternate browser for few simple reasons. Those browsers work pretty well on all sites, they are faster, they are free, they have low market share when compared to Internet Explorer.

.2. Keep your Operating System up-to-date.

Always keep your operating system up-to-date. If you are using Windows then make sure Windows Update is enabled. If you use Linux make sure your distribution is upto date.

3. Always use user with no administration privilege

As Uncle Ben says in the Spiderman movie “With great power, comes great responsibility”. With a less privileged user, even if you end up in an infected site, you will not affect other users or the entire system.

4. Install Antivirus / Antispyware

Make sure you have installed security software like Antivirus, Antispyware and Windows Firewall is enabled.

5. Never provide personal information

Personal information like home address, phone number, social security number, passwords, names of family members, credit card numbers, bank account number are something which are not required for operation of any website. Most genuine websites will not ask for these details.

6. Phishing/Malware sites

Phishing is a fraudulent activity where a site will look like a legitimate site but will have different url. These websites are hosted by cyber criminals to gather private information of the internet users. These links are usually sent through emails or instant messengers. So, don't click any links on an email sent by unknown person. Check these links for further information http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phishing, http://www.microsoft.com

/protect/fraud/phishing

/symptoms.aspx

Always make sure that the url in the address bar is same as the url of the site you think you are in before providing any information. This might save you from sleepless nights and prevent you from giving away your credit card/bank information to phishing sites.

7. Protecting your kids

There are many parental control software available which can protect your kids from landing on unwanted sites and also lets you to monitor their online activity. Let me suggest a few of them. Windows live family safety (http://download.live.com/familysafety), it is part of windows live essentials package. K9 web protection (http://www1.k9webprotection.com/).

For more information log on to www.lnkr.net

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