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What Is a VPN? And Why You Should Use a VPN on Public Wi-Fi

If you’ve ever wondered if it’s safe to use public Wi-Fi, you are not alone. In fact, according to the Norton Cybersecurity Insights Report, 6 in 10 consumers believe using public Wi-Fi is riskier than using a public restroom. And it is. Surfing the Web or transacting on an unsecured Wi-Fi network means you’re placing your private information and anonymity at risk. That’s why a virtual private network, better known as a VPN, is a must for anyone worried about online security and privacy. 

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The Dos and Don’ts of Using Public Wi-Fi

Public Wi-Fi is available just about everywhere, from the local coffee shop to the hotels and airports you visit while traveling. Wi-Fi has made our lives a little easier, but it also poses security risks to the personal information available on our laptops and smartphones. Here is a helpful list of dos and don’ts you should follow if you plan to use public Wi-Fi.

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The Risks of Public Wi-Fi

Picture this. It’s Saturday morning and you’re hanging out at your local coffee shop using the free Wi-Fi to catch up on a few tasks you couldn’t quite get to during your busy week. Sound familiar? This is a typical scenario for many of us, but did you know you might be unaware of some threats lurking in the background on public Wi-Fi while you balance your bank account and sip a latte? What Is Public Wi-Fi? Public Wi-Fi can be found in popular public places like airports, coffee shops, malls, restaurants, and hotels — and it allows you to access the Internet for free. These “hotspots”...
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How To Set Up and Secure Your New Tech

Congratulations on your new device! You’re likely caught up in the fun of having a new gadget, and probably shopping for a shiny (or sparkly) new case. While a case protects your device from nature and clumsy hands, it doesn’t make your phone absolutely safe. Why? Because it doesn’t protect what matters most—your information. Think about all that you do on your devices—sharing precious photos, ordering your favorite latte, and shopping. With the rise of cybercrime and the high costs associated with it, it’s even more important that you learn how to protect what matters most—the personal i...
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Keep Your Home Wi-Fi Safe in 7 Simple Steps

It is beginning to feel like the Internet is a basic necessity for existence in the 21st century. With all our devices connected to the Internet, we have an indescribable physical mobility that leads to increased productivity. It is safe to say that the Internet is for everyone and does not limit itself to the tech savvy. Unfortunately, when not safeguarded, the Internet can be a playground for nefarious activities caused by people with malicious intent.   Take a home wireless network as an example. Almost every member of the family accesses it through laptops, PCs, cell phones and tablet...
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Your Summer Vacation Guide to Mobile Device and Public Wi-Fi Security

Vacation may be a time for rest and relaxation, but your mobile devices likely won’t be getting a break. Now that smartphones and tablets are part of our daily lives, we spend more time than ever staying connected, even while on vacation. Just think of all the selfies you’ll be taking and updates you’ll be posting to your social networks! But, while sharing your vacation moments will be a fun way to capture your R&R, your fun vacation could turn into a bad situation if you choose to use your mobile devices on free public Wi-Fi during your trip. Learn how to be aware of using your mobile devices on public Wi-Fi at key points on your vacation.

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The 12 Days of Norton

"We’re counting down days until Christmas is here,
And gifting you cool security tips to be of good cheer,

And make sure this season is the best of your year."

Join us every day for a new Norton tip to keep your holidays merry and bright. A secure holiday is a happy holiday with Norton.

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What Is a No-Log VPN Network?

Many VPN providers safeguard their customers’ anonymity by offering a no-log network, meaning that they do not collect, or “log,” any information transmitted through the network. They don’t save information about your personal details, where you go online, what you download, or what you search for. Therefore your privacy and anonymity are protected from everybody — even your VPN provider.

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How Safe Is Surfing on 4G vs. Wi-Fi?

You’re probably familiar with 3G, 4G, and Wi-Fi hotspots. In today’s increasingly connected mobile world, there are a variety of ways to get and stay connected to the Internet, but what’s really the safest way? Truth be told, nothing is 100% safe. However, there are ways that you can beef up your own security to get as close to that 100% as possible. It begins with understanding what these technologies are, and the risks that come along with them. How Do Mobile Devices Connect to the Internet? Let’s break down the three different ways your mobile device can connect to the Internet, and...
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Pokémon Go Cyber Security and Privacy Guidelines

In one way or another, you’ve probably heard of Pokémon Go, the latest new app that seems to be taking over smartphones everywhere. When I first heard about the app, it piqued my curiosity, given my passion for cyber security. Admittedly, I became addicted immediately, which lead me to research how the game works, how to play it, and what the possible security risks are that come along with the game. Firstly, it is important to note that this game is not your average smartphone game. It uses a technology known as augmented reality, which is a blend of real life and technology. There are m...
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Parents Best Practices to Social Media Security

With connected kids today, it can be a full-time job for parents to be able to monitor their online activities. We’ve put together some helpful tips and guidelines so that you and your whole family can enjoy social media safely.

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Holiday Travelers' Tips for Device Security in Airports

As the most popular travel days of the year approach, many holiday travelers are creating mental checklists for navigating busy airports — most likely with their trusty mobile devices in hand and laptops in their bags. To save fliers the headache and heartbreak of having their devices compromised en route to Grandma’s house, here’s a checklist to keep smartphones, tablets, and laptops safe while spending time in an airport. 

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The Most Common Threats Children Face Online

Children are among the most active Internet users, and are unfortunately subject to a number of threats. If you allow your children to spend considerable time surfing the web, it’s important to know what threats they face so you may deal with them accordingly.

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#30SecTech: What Is a VPN?

There’s a good reason hackers love free public Wi-Fi. It’s because they can easily access information on unsecured Wi-Fi networks. So when you’re in a coffee shop or an airport checking your emails or paying bills while on public Wi-Fi, you could be letting cybercriminals spy on your sensitive and personal information. VPNs, or virtual private networks, like Norton WiFi Privacy can turn those public Wi-Fi hotspots into secured private connections. Watch this short (30 seconds!) video to see how a VPN could give you a new sense of security on Wi-Fi. ...
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Pokémon Go Real World Risks and Safety Tips

The goal of this game is quite the opposite of all other games- to get you out into the world and interacting with other people playing the game. If anything, parents have been applauding this game for getting their children off of the couch and out getting some actual exercise. So far, my favorite headline about the game has been “Sore Legs Become Pandemic As Pokémon Go Players Accidentally Get Exercise.”  However, I’ve also stumbled upon some other news headlines that are quite worrisome, that affect people’s virtual and physical privacy. As a result, instead of writing a typical artic...
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How Can I Tell If I Have Malware and What Can I Do About It?

Malware has become a catchall term for various types of cyber security risks, such as viruses, Trojan horses, worms, adware, ransomware and spyware. Many of us use these terms interchangeably to describe strange symptoms or behaviors encountered on a computer. However, all of them share a common goal, which is to compromise the safety of your devices. Symptoms of malware may appear obvious or discrete; knowing how to detect these dangerous intrusions will help you determine how to go about fixing the problem should it ever occur.   Malware is short for malicious software and refers to pro...
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What is Cyberbullying?

Online socializing has both good and bad sides to it. While it has opened a whole new dimension of ways to communicate and has added convenience to our lifestyles, it unfortunately has some unpleasant effects too.

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Pokémon Go Parents Guide for Children

One of the great things about this game is that is popular amongst both children and adults, so our main suggestion is to play with them. This can be a great opportunity for you to engage and play along with your children! First things first, with all apps your children are interested in, download the app and play it yourself to become familiar with what your children will be doing.  This way, you can become more informed about the gameplay, and you can talk to your child about how to be safe while using it. This is part two of a three part series where we are going to delve into examini...
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How to Securely Set Up Your Home Wi-Fi Router

Wireless Internet access is one of the modern conveniences of our time. However, your home wireless router can also be an access point for hackers. If your Wi-Fi router isn’t secured properly, you could be letting anyone with a wireless-enabled device gain access to your home network. That means you’re opening up your emails, banking information, and maybe even details of your smart home’s daily schedule to criminals.  Basic Wireless Security Every router should have a password to keep out the bad guys. Some routers come with default passwords, but you should change these during setup. C...
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12 Days of Norton Tips

We’re counting down days until Christmas is here,
And gifting you cool security tips to be of good cheer,

And make sure this season is the best of your year.

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What Personal Information Should You Safeguard?

Some 10 million identity thefts happen in the United States every year. Taking extra steps to protect your personal information—and knowing what information you need to safeguard—is the best way to prevent identity theft from happening to you. Let’s review this information to help you protect yourself as much as possible: Low Sensitivity Among the information considered “low risk” in regard to personal information sensitivity is your full name, address, and phone number. Medium Sensitivity Information regarded as “medium” in terms of sensitivity includes your date of birth, place of bi...
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Why Hackers Love Public WiFi

A free Wi-Fi connection in a public space can seem like a lifesaver when you’re on the go. But if you decide to use public Wi-Fi, just be aware that you could be making yourself an easy target for hackers — and putting your information and more at risk. Online Crime Takes Many Forms The Norton Cybersecurity Insights Report announced that 594 million people around the world were victims of cybercrime in 2015, with 21% of Americans getting their email hacked and 12% having their financial data stolen after shopping online. With public Wi-Fi available everywhere, what seems like a conveni...
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Teach Your Kids to Avoid Online Scams

Surfing the Internet means possible exposure to online scams, something your children might not have any concept of. If you’re allowing them to go online, it’s imperative that you discuss online scams. Such scams come in a variety of guises, including those that specifically target children. Let’s look at how to best protect your kiddies from those who would scam them: Educate Yourself First The first step in protecting your children from online scams is to educate yourself on the types of scams currently floating around the Internet. One type of scam is the free trial offer, which clai...
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10 Facts About Today's Cybersecurity Landscape That You Should Know

The cybersecurity landscape is constantly evolving with new threats and never-before-seen vulnerabilities being discovered by security experts and, just as likely, exploited by cybercriminals at a fast pace. Breaking news alerts of widespread data breaches or high-profile hacks serve as reminders of the need for security online, but the flood of information can also be overwhelming. Let this cut through the clutter - Here are 10 facts you need to know about today's cybersecurity landscape:   1: Cybercriminals are using more zero-day vulnerabilities than ever before. A new zero-day vuln...
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What Is VoIP?

VoIP is an acronym for “voice over Internet Protocol.” That means any phone call that takes place over the Internet, rather than on landlines or through mobile towers. This alternative to traditional phone calls is gaining in popularity exponentially with both companies and consumers. Skype, Google Voice, and FaceTime are well-known and extremely popular examples of Internet telephony services. The question is: Are phone calls made over the Internet vulnerable to standard online security risks? The answer is yes, as is any other information transmitted this way, especially in light of recent hacks to VoIP apps. Read on to find out how to secure your VoIP calls. 

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How a VPN Can Help Hide Your Search History

Most of us use search engines on a daily basis. It’s become automatic. If we don’t know what something is, or hear a word that we can’t define, we go online and type the term into our favorite search engine. And voila, we have our answer in seconds. But did you ever stop to wonder what happens to your searches?

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Stop Stressing: 10 Internet Safety Rules To Help Keep Your Family Safe Online

Children today can access more information than any generation before. Because of the Internet they now have a wealth of information that can enrich their lives in new and wondrous ways. But the Internet also has the potential to harm us, and the people we love. Too often we read about another company falling victim to a cyber attack, or a friend’s email or social network account being hacked. These dangers are real. And though there are real reasons to protect your kids and your data from cyber thieves, you shouldn’t need to shy away from the advantages the Internet has to offer your f...
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How to Avoid Public Wi-Fi Woes on a Business Trip

As summer arrives, it’s not just families that will be filling airports and hotels. While other people may be vacationing, business travelers will continue to work their way around the country and the world, often using unsafe public Wi-Fi.

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Is Personal Data Really Gone When It’s Deleted from a Device?

Most of us are familiar with deleting data—we do it almost every day. We move folders into the recycling bin, dump old emails into the trash, and delete personal records to free up space on a computer’s hard drive. But what really happens to all that data? Where does it go, and is it really gone forever? Some people will be relieved to know that, most of the time, deleted files are not permanently gone. Many of us have at one time or another accidently deleted items we did not mean to; in this case the prospect of bringing those files back from the dead is usually good news. The bad news...
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Cyber Security Best Practices for Employees

Employees are on the front lines of information security. The more that can be done to regularly educate yourself of the

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National Clean Out Your Computer day-The Importance of Clean Computing

February 8th is National Clean out Your Computer day, and as they say, “Cleanliness is next to Godliness.”  For centuries, this saying applied to tasks like scrubbing the floors and dusting the bookcases. Today, however, it applies to your computer just as much as it does to your house. When you “clean” your computer, you don’t just dust off the keyboard and wipe fingerprints from the screen. You also pay attention to the state of the hard drive, updating software and removing old programs. Why Clean? Cleaning both your computer’s hardware and its software matters.  Clean hardware help...
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Data Privacy Day 2016: Ten Ways to Keep Your Data Private

The Internet has blurred the lines between real world and the virtual one. Technology is barreling into our hands through smartphones at an unbelievable pace. While this is good for productivity and progress, it makes it easy for thieves to do their job. The anonymity and location independence that comes with the Internet muddles the moral character of even the most ethical person. One can’t assume your phone and the information it stores is safe from the malicious intentions of the human mind. Data Privacy Day (DPD), is an international effort held annually on January 28 in order to hel...
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What is The Deep Dark Web: #30SecTech

There are many layers to the Internet that you may not be aware of. There’s the part that everyone sees Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, news websites and everything else under the search engine sun. This is known as the “surface web.”

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The Risks of Third Party App Stores

Sure, downloading apps from third-party sites—i.e. not the Apple Store, Android Market, or Blackberry App World—can be all kinds of tempting. However, to do so is to put your device, and therefore yourself, at risk. What Third-Party App Stores Do Dangerous third-party app stores work via malicious advertising or even code. The ads or codes are “injected” into popular apps users purchase through these stores instead of legitimate options. While not all third-party apps are “bad,” many stores bait users by offering popular apps for much cheaper prices, and subsequently put user privacy ver...
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The 2016 Online Dating Guide

While Valentine’s Day is for lovers, we bet you didn’t know that there is a holiday for the single folks as well! Singles Awareness Day was created as an alternative to Valentine’s Day, and whether you’re celebrating or commiserating your single status, we’re pretty sure that many of you have crossed paths with an online dating site at some point. Nowadays, online dating is as normal to life as is online shopping. Believe it or not, online dating has been around for 20 years, and as a result, cybercriminals are finding big money in people looking for love. 70% of compromised users are wome...
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Pop-Cultural Relevance of Hacking in Today's World

When hacking was first introduced in film and television, it was nowhere near as prevalent as it is today. The threat landscape was years away from becoming what it is now, so hacking and cybercrime wasn’t quite the household name it is today, therefore, there was a wide unfamiliarity of it within the public eye. Directors and writers have struggled with how to portray hacking in film simply because the act of hacking in real life is not very interesting or visually compelling. It’s just lines of code scrolling down a computer screen. In order to keep the viewer entertained they used chee...
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4 Steps to Make Your Smart Home More Security Smart

“IoT” is an acronym for the “Internet of Things.” And any device that can connect to the Internet and transmit or receive data can be considered a “smart” thing. That includes smart homes, also known as connected homes. Smart homes — in which IoT devices such as thermostats or ovens can be programmed from anywhere — are popular with consumers who seek convenience. Some people, however, may not realize the connected devices or appliances they’ve grown to depend on could leak private information or be susceptible to hackers. In the rush to get products to market, smart device makers may not see security as a priority. 

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Netiquette For Parents

No one said parenting is easy. Especially when your children are doing things in the cyber world that you as a child never imagined. With the wealth of information and non-traditional methods of making friends and hanging out, our children are no doubt having a good time, thanks to the advancements in technology. But that still doesn’t mean they have the liberty to do as they please at the expense of others. One of the most important aspects of parenting is setting a good example. Your kids will closely watch your online manners and etiquette. You need to be aware and educated about net...
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The Importance of Data Back-Up

Have you ever lost a lot of really important data? Or, alternately, have you ever had a moment of panic where you thought you did? Whether it’s images of a family vacation, a report from work or a semester’s worth of homework, you probably have data on your computer that’s not just valuable, it’s too valuable to lose. Backing up your data regularly will help you to avoid the crushing feeling that comes with finding out that all your hard work and treasured memories are gone. The Importance of Backing Up Let’s face it, no matter how great your computer or external hard drive are, one da...
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8 Cyber Security Tips for Business Travelers

Whether you’re a regular business traveler, or a high-tech adventurer seeker, traveling—particularly abroad—poses unique cyber security threats. Business travelers are especially vulnerable because they often carry sensitive data, both personal and business related, on a variety of devices including smartphone, laptops, and tablet. Don’t cancel your travel plans just yet. Here are eight cyber security tips for business travelers that are also great tips for anyone planning a holiday abroad: 1. Lock Devices Down Most smartphones, laptops, and tablets come equipped with security settin...
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Safe Online Shopping Tips for The Holiday Season

The holidays are just around the corner, and that means many of us will be making purchases online to avoid large crowds and busy mall traffic. While online shopping has made our lives easier, it also exposes new weaknesses with the information we use to make those very purchases. The holiday season is a lucrative time for online retailers and cybercriminals see this as an opportunity to profit as well. In fact, Norton Safe Web found that shopping sites are amongst the top ten most frequently exploited websites. An additional concern is bogus e-commerce websites, which are made to look le...
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5 Ways You Can Help Yourself Stay Secure Online

When you’re using the Internet, your Internet security suite can only go so far to protect you from potential dangers like spyware, ransomware and malware. You have to do some of the work yourself, because there are some threats that no Internet security suite can protect you against. Social engineering is a good example of this. Social engineering is a technique that cybercriminals use, which involves human-to-human interaction in order to get the user to divulge information. Based on exploiting human nature and emotional reactions, there are many ways that attackers can try to trick y...
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How a Gmail Password Stealing Scam Works

Sophisticated cybercriminals have devised a way to steal email credentials that bypasses two-factor authentication security and doesn’t rely on otherwise easy-to-spot phishing methods. Here’s what you need to know to protect yourself from this email password stealing scam. Who is affected? Symantec researchers have found this scam largely targets Gmail, Hotmail, and Yahoo Mail users. However, everyone with an email account should be aware of how this scam works to avoid falling victim. See how the scam works. In just a few quick steps, cybercriminals trick victims into disclosing email ...
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The 5 Stages of Phone Loss Grief

It’s happened to most of us. That urge to look at your phone has become a part of everyday life. Maybe you are expecting a phone call, or perhaps you want to know how many ‘likes’ that picture of your cat has earned. Maybe it’s just that fix your life needs at that moment that only a smartphone can give you. You rummage through your pocket to find it with no luck. Perhaps it’s in the other one. Nope. You try your bag. Nope, again. You break into a sweat. After what seems like an eternity, you come to the crushing realization that you have lost one of the most valuable material possessions...
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7 Dos and Don’ts of Secure Online Tax Filing

Online fraud is one of fastest growing crimes of our time. The ability to be anonymous, and the fact that it can be performed anywhere in the world makes it very difficult, if not impossible, for law enforcement to curb it. As online fraud continues to grow, an unfortunate number of American citizens might face this scenario: It’s tax season, and you are getting your paperwork together in order to file your taxes. During the process you receive an email from the IRS stating “Congratulations on filing your tax return.” This is a normal email you would expect after you file taxes, however, ...
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What Is Smishing?

A form of phishing, smishing is when someone tries to trick you into giving them your private information via a text or SMS message. Smishing is becoming an emerging and growing threat in the world of online security. Read on to learn what smishing is and how you can protect yourself against it. Put simply, smishing is any kind of phishing that involves a text message. Often times, this form of phishing involves a text message in an SMS or a phone number. Smishing is particularly scary because sometimes people tend to be more inclined to trust a text message than an email. Most people a...
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Is Your Identity Exposed? Tips to Secure Your Identity Online

Did you know that 429 million identities were exposed in 2015? Findings from the 2016 Symantec Internet Security Threat Report show that this number actually hides a bigger story. While there was a record number of 9 mega breaches in this year, companies are not required to disclose the full extent of a data breach. The total number of people affected by a data breach and whose identity is compromised as a result could be much greater. A conservative estimate by Symantec accounting for unreported breaches pushes the number of records lost in a data breach to more than a half billion, in ...
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How To Talk to Your Kids About Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying is not very different from the ill reputed bullying that happens in the school yard. It has the same psychological and social implication that leaves the formative minds of children insecure. What makes cyberbullying a little more intense than bullying is it not limited to the school yard. According to a 2015 survey 34.4% of students between the ages of 11 and 15 have been cyberbullied. This includes children who have been threatened online to be hurt, had rumors spread about them, or had mean and hurtful comments or pictures of them online. This onslaught of hateful messag...
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Credit Monitoring Services and Other Anti-Fraud Protection

Identity theft is the most common complaint lodged with the Federal Trade Commission, to the tune of 11.7 million a year. That means roughly one-in-five Americans over the age of 16 have become victims of identity theft. 14 percent of those victims experienced a monetary loss of $1 or more. Half of all victims resolved the issue within a day, but nearly one-third (29 percent) had to spend a month or more getting their life back on track. While identity theft gets a lot of the press, there are other forms of fraud out there, both on the Internet and off. The good news is that there are a my...
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Software Terms of Service and Privacy Policies Explained

If you’re like most people, you don’t read the Terms of Service when you get a new app or buy a new device. That’s a big mistake, because a lot of apps on the market that are less-than-ideal, known as “grayware,” count on you allowing them access to your information. They know most people don’t read the Terms of Service, so their Terms of Service include language authorizing a massive invasion of your privacy. At the same time, you might have noticed that most Terms of Service is just boilerplate. How do you read the Terms of Service and find out what you need to know about privacy without...
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