Tips on how to stay safe online during the COVID-19 pandemic

Security and privacy for my device

Boy on a roof top being a security super hero.

 

Why is security important?

Cyber criminals use technology online to commit crimes, like stealing money, identity theft and spreading computer viruses.
This can happen without you seeing or knowing.

 

If you do not have the right protections in place,
a cyber criminal could:

  • steal money
  • access your bank accounts, or your parent’s and carer’s account
  • use your personal information
  • steal your identity and set up fake social media accounts in your name
  • spread internet viruses and malware

 

Passwords

When it comes to passwords for your devices and online accounts, remember to keep them strong, secret and safe.

Passwords should be

Strong 

Security experts say we should use a ‘pass phrase’ rather than a password.

This is a long password (around 15-20 characters) that is hard to guess. It’s also a good idea to use different passwords for all online accounts and to change your passwords regularly.

Find out more about how to set strong passwords.

 

Secret  

Keep your passwords secret and don’t share them with anyone.

 

Safe

Keep your passwords safe by not writing them down or storing them in your phone or on another device.

Check the sender

Only open emails or texts from people you know IRL (in real life) — messages from people you don’t know could have a virus or malware.

Don’t open emails, attachments or texts offering you something free or saying you have won something. It is probably a virus or a way to steal your personal information.

Remember, if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Find out more about how to know if something is fake.

 

Ask you mum, dad or carer to go through these tips with you to keep your mobile, tablet or computer safe.

Help keep your devices safe


  1. Password protect your device — on mobiles and tablets set a PIN or passcode and on laptops or computers use a password.


  2. Don’t use unknown or free wi-fi connections — if there is no password to get online, cyber criminals can steal your data and personal information.


  3. Use in-built security features — make sure functions like ‘find my phone’ and other apps are set up on your device.


  4. Update your operating system, software and apps — this will ensure you have the most up to date security features.


  5. Install security or anti-virus software — this will help to keep your  devices free of viruses and malware.


  6. Back up your data — always back up data from your phone, computer or tablet.