Internet safety: tips for browsing, banking and sharing securely

5 February 2020

The Internet offers us convenience, knowledge and connectivity, but it’s also important to be aware of the security risks, which can range from malicious software to unsafe links and fake websites. 

To protect ourselves and those around us from harm, there are a number of simple steps we can take.

Web browsing

  • Use anti-virus software and keep it up to date.
  • Only download files or applications from websites you trust, e.g.  
  • Keep your computer operating system and browser up to date.
  • Think before you click! Hover your cursor over web links first to view the URL (this appears at the bottom of your browser window). If you don’t trust the address, try accessing the content by typing the organisation’s official URL into your web browser and navigating from there.

Online shopping and banking

  • Use multi-factor authentication where available.
  • Access your bank’s website by typing the address directly into your browser.
  • Use strong, unique passwords and passphrases and a personal password manager.
  • Avoid using public computers or free wifi to access sensitive content.
  • Check if a website is reputable and has a refund policy before purchasing. If you’re not sure, search for the site on Scamwatch.
  • When making payments, check for a secure connection with ‘https’ in the URL.
  • Be cautious of discounts and adverts that seem too good to be true.

Social media and personal privacy

  • Regularly check your social media privacy settings – do you know who you’re sharing your information with?
  • Protect your accounts with strong passwords.
  • Be careful sharing information online which could compromise your security, such as date of birth, address and holiday plans.
  • If your social media accounts are compromised, contact IDCARE immediately.

For more cyber security resources, visit UQ’s cyber security website. If you feel that you’ve been impacted by cybercrime in a personal capacity, please report it to the Australian Cyber Security Centre via their Report page. If you are impacted by cybercrime in a professional capacity, please contact IT support immediately.