This Guide was developed to provide appropriate, targeted and local information for women in the ACT about staying safe online. It includes information on how to protect your computer from viruses and unauthorised access, how to protect your privacy on social media web sites, where to get help if you don’t feel safe online, as well as some of the most common internet scams and how to recognise them.
It’s easy to learn how to protect yourself online. You can’t—and don’t need to—learn about every trick out there. You just need to take the right precautions.
WCHM’s Top 10 Tips for Staying Safe Online (Open)
- Install anti-virus and anti-spyware software on your computer.
- Turn on automatic updates on your system so that your computer automatically downloads security updates and fixes.
- Don’t open unsolicited or junk emails. Delete them straight away.
- If you receive a junk email and open it, don’t click on links or open any attachments contained in the email.
- Never share online passwords with anyone for any reason.
- If you purchase products online, only pay for items via a website’s secure payment system. Check that the payment webpage address begins with ‘https’ and there is a closed padlock symbol in the address bar.
- Check that any online shopping, auction and classifieds websites you use are reputable.
- Do not click on links in advertisements posted on social media. Use a search engine to search for a webpage and establish if the company is legitimate.
- Update the privacy settings on your social media accounts.
- Many internet-based scams start with a phone call, so do not respond to unsolicited phone calls asking for personal or financial information, even if they claim to be from a known organisation such as your phone or utility company. If you suspect the call is real, contact the business yourself through a known number to check.
Privacy Settings, Social Media and Online Bullying
Identity theft and financial scams
Where to get help
Viruses and Hacking
ANZ – Types of Banking Fraud
Australian Cyber Security Centre – Information for individuals and families
Australian Cyber Security Centre – Working to protect senior Australians
Australian Cyber Security Centre – Create strong passwords
Australian Tax Office (ATO)
Australia Post – Scam alerts
Broadband for Seniors
CallerSmart (United States of America) – Cyberstalking: What is Cyberstalking and What to Do if You’re a Victim
CBS News – 5 Common Phone Scams Targeting Seniors
Domestic Violence Resource Centre Victoria – Cyber Stalking and Harassment
Lawstuff – Cyberbullying
MailGuard – Another Online Banking Scam: MailGuard Shows You How To Identify A Phishing Email
Microsoft – Turn automatic updating on or off
Naked Security (Sophos) – SMS phishing scam pretends to be Apple “chatbot” – don’t fall for it!
NSW Department of Education – Controlling your privacy settings in social media
Ripoff Report – Complaint Review: The International Award Payment Center
ScamWatch (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission)
SplashData – “123456” Maintains the Top Spot on SplashData’s Annual “Worst Passwords” List
Telstra – Active scams
wikiHow – How to Avoid an Online Romance Scam
wikiHow – How to Spot an Online Dating Scammer