5 Things You Should Never Post On Your Business Facebook Page

Your business Facebook page can be a fantastic marketing tool. Used properly, it can build relationships, build your brand, build trust and credibility and drive enquiries and sales. However, there are some common mistakes you need to avoid if you’re going to get your Facebook page really working for your business. If you are doing any of the 5 things below, you’re at best wasting your time on a Facebook page that’s just not going to do you justice and at worst heading for trouble, even getting your page shut down.

Here’s a list of the 5 biggest mistakes I see on Facebook pages – there’s no excuse to fall foul of them now.

1. Rants

I know, it’s so tempting to vent your anger/frustration/opinion of your competitors on your Facebook page but it’s the equivalent of washing your dirty linen in public. It doesn’t look good and doesn’t help anyone, least of all you. It looks unprofessional and all you’ll do is create a pity party, which is a total distraction from your business. Don’t get me wrong, I’m no angel, but I think I’ve ranted just once on my page in 3 years (in response to a spate of really rude emails) and I regretted it almost immediately. It’s just not worth it. Complain to your pals, vent to your family but keep it OFF Facebook and other social media. Better to maintain a dignified silence and let karma take care of the rest.

2. Other People’s Memes (Rather Than Sharing The Original Post)

SHARING other people’s memes or posts is fine, in fact it’s a brilliant idea. When you share from their page, they benefit from the shares which helps their page engagement. This is called Ethical Sharing. The great thing is you benefit too as Facebook seems to give greater weight and reach to popular posts shared from other pages. It’s a win win. If you do the opposite – in other words you just save the image to your computer and post it on your page, rather than sharing then that’s just not cool. Not only that but if the owner of the meme or artwork finds out, they can legitimately report you for stealing their intellectual property. Ethical sharing is the only way!

3. Sell Sell Sell Posts

Nobody wants to be sold to. Everyone wants to be helped. If all you post on your business Facebook page is pushy sales message after pushy sales message, pretty soon you’ll end up with a page that’s as flat as a pancake. Nobody is going to engage with that! Instead, think about the people you want to attract to your page and think about what they want to see. By all means post offers and deals, but put a bit of YOU into the page. Record some videos showing your products, talking about your suppliers, telling a story about your business – anything to inject some personality into your page and start to build relationships with your page fans. Ask questions, share tips, HELP people. You’ll get a much more engaged page and remember, people buy people!

5. Like & Share Competitions

They are against Facebook’s Promotional Guidelines which means YOU SHOULD NOT USE THEM and Facebook can and will shut down your page if they catch you. I’ve seen it happen more than once – it’s just not worth the risk. And apart from that, they are a huge wasted opportunity – it’s much MUCH better to use a dedicated competition app that lets you collect email addresses of entrants, that way you grow your list while you’re promoting. Even if the app charges you a small amount to add the ‘collect emails’ feature, it’s definitely worth it because you NEED to start building your email list.

5. Anything NOT Aimed At Your Ideal Customers

By ideal customers, I mean people who are a good fit for your business and are most likely to buy. If you’re not clear who you’re trying to attract to your page then you’re going to be wasting a ton of time, money and energy and getting lukewarm results. Instead, figure out who is most likely to buy from you and target all your marketing at them – including your business Facebook page. Work out how you can add value, how you can help them, what sort of stuff they are likely to love and share. The more ideal customers you can attract, the more engagement you’ll get on your Facebook page. The more engagement you get on your Facebook page, the more likely people are to stick around and take up any offers you put in front of them.

 

 

6 Ways to Market Your Small Business for Less Than $100

  1. Research your market

Cost: $0

The more time you can invest in identifying not only your target markets but the characteristics that would describe your ideal buyer types, the more you will be able to:

  • Focus marketing efforts with laser-like precision
  • Hone your marketing messages to attract and engage likely buyers.

And all-stars teams don’t just study up on their own game plan, they check out what competitors are doing so that they can look for opportunities to beat them. Going head to head with a competitor in areas where they are stronger or more well-established is usually going to result in a loss. On the other hand, if you spend time analyzing the competitive field to look for their areas of weakness or gaps in the marketplace, you can discover opportunities where your business will have the best chance to grow.

  1. Turn email into your heavy hitter

Cost: From $20 to 50 per month (up to 5,000 contacts) via email marketing platforms such as Constant Contact or Campaigner

Email marketing comes in high on our list of recommendations for small businesses and startups, because it works. Regardless of industry or organizational size, marketers across the board point to email marketing as the tactic that produces their highest return on marketing dollars invested. ExactTarget.com’s 50 Email Marketing Tips and Stats for 2014 reported that marketers received an average return of investment of $44.25 for every $1 spent on email marketing.

Not only is it effective, it’s also desired. In study after study, consumers regularly say that email is their preferred channel for brand communications. The marketing gurus at MarketingProfs.com shared data from a Message Systems study that found for nearly one-third of all consumers, email is the communication channel they prefer when it comes to marketing.

  1. Add speed to your line up

Cost: $9 per month (or less)

The faster you can engage, intrigue and convert your audience members, the better. Most consumers start their search for a business, product or service online. What’s more, in many cases online research has replaced the traditional buying cycle to the extent that by the time a buyer contacts a sales person for information, they are already completely through the buying journey (or nearly so).

To ensure that prospects who arrive at your website can quickly and easily access the information most likely to convert them from browser to buyer, you’ll need to be sure that your website can automatically detect what type of device they are using. Creating a semi-customized mobile version of your website on a site like Duda can be done in just a few moments, for a few dollars a month. It’s an investment that is likely to pay off over and over again in increased engagement and conversions.

  1. Optimize for crowd appeal

Cost: $0

Although many small-business owners claim that word of mouth is their best marketing, it probably shouldn’t be. When it comes to making big purchases, 81 percent of consumers go online before heading out to a store and may spend from two to three months gathering the information they need to make a decision, according to GE Capital Retail Bank’s second annual Major Purchase Shopper Study.

Even when it comes to low-ticket items or the type of small businesses a consumer is likely to buy on a daily basis, the Internet, accessed via desktop, tablet or mobile, is often the starting point that leads to a buying decision. In fact, when it comes to mobile searches, more than half (55 percent) resulted in conversions within one hour, according to a Mobile Search Moments report, (which is also another great argument for investing in mobile-friendly web design).

Whether your products or services would be classified as big ticket or extremely affordable, the conclusion is the same: small-business owners and entrepreneurs that do keyword research and build out their web sites in accordance with best practices in search engine optimization (SEO) will be rewarded by search engines with more favorable SERP (search engine result placement) in organic search results. In other words, they will get more website traffic because their business listings will be placed directly in the path of prospective buyers who are researching products or services, or who are looking for a business online.

  1. Be strategically social

Cost: $41-71 per month (depending on what’s left of your $100 budget!)

If you invest that $41 in sponsored posts on Facebook or LinkedIn, you can put your brand, products or services in front of thousands of members of your target audience each month. Even a small investment in social marketing can produce hundreds of new followers on social networks as well as increased web traffic, brand awareness and hopefully bottom line profits that can be traced back to initial engagement on social media.

Because of their popularity with consumers (Facebook) and with business buyers (LinkedIn), social platforms have done small-business marketers a big favor. Not only do they allow you to set a limit on the amount spent to sponsor a post or page, they have also built tools which allow you to drill down into demographics in order to put these ads and posts directly on the feeds of individuals who meet your ideal buyer type criteria.

  1. Strengthen your team

Cost: $0

The idea of establishing informal partnerships with other businesses for the purposes of cross-promoting or marketing cooperatively can be extremely beneficial, in particular for entrepreneurs, startups and small-business owners who have yet to build out large contact databases. Sharing contacts and working with other business owners whose target markets overlap with yours could help you build brand awareness — and grow your organization — much quicker than you would be able to do on your own.

 

WE DO THE LEGWORK FOR YOU

 

There are major retailers selling, PC’s that are only lasting for 18months to 3 years – so they can sell more.

If you want to save time, money and frustration then we would love to build you a customised PC in line with your needs and budget.

Your business software can be loaded and data transferred, your internet and printer can be connected and antivirus installed and tested and we can simply hand it all over to you when its all done.

You get a 12 Month Warranty
If something does go wrong we can fix it with little downtime
We know each part that goes into every computer.
We buy our components locally so you will be supporting a LOCAL business
You also receive a FREE 5 minute help desk for six months after your purchase

for those little niggly IT questions you have – IT on tap.

You also get FREE software installed as an added bonus.

So when you are buying a new PC or laptop call Living with IT for a FREE quote.

“Our Service – IT’s Personal”

http://www.livingwithit.com.au/about-us-2

Tips to maintain your computer

Keep liquids away from your laptop. As tempting as it might be to drink coffee, soda, water or any other liquid near your laptop, accidents can happen all too easily. Alternatively, use a cup with a cover on it, so even if it does spill, the liquid doesn’t go anywhere. Spilled liquids may damage the internal microelectronic components or cause electrical damage. Short circuits can corrupt data or even permanently destroy some parts of the laptop. The solution is very simple: Keep your drinks away from your computer. Even if you are careful, someone else might spill your drink.

 Having antivirus software available is the best defence against a virus. Even if you know what you download, it could still contain a virus. If you choose not to have antivirus software you run the risk of a circuit error or software problem in your system. The virus may also slow down the system operations and performance.

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Keep food away from your laptop. Don’t eat over your laptop, the crumbs can fall between the keys and provide an invitation to small bugs or damage the circuitry. Worse yet, the laptop will look dirty if there are crumbs on it.

Do not use your computer in a room where animals are. Their fur and hair can get into the internal workings and damage them. Also larger animals (e.g dogs) can accidentally damage them by knocking them off their support by brushing past, wagging tail, tripping over leads etc.

Always have clean hands when using your laptop. Clean hands make it easier to use your laptop touchpad and there will be less risk of leaving dirt and other stains on the computer. In addition, if you clean your hands before you use the laptop, you will reduce wear and tear on the coating caused by contact with sweat and small particles that can act upon the laptop’s exterior.

Protect the LCD display monitor. When you shut your laptop, make sure there are no small items, such as a pencil or small ear-phones, on the keyboard. These can damage the display screen if the laptop is shut on them; the screen will scratch if the item is rough. Close the lid gently and holding it in the middle. Closing the lid using only one side causes pressure on that hinge, and over time can cause it to bend and snap.

WATCH FOR RANSOM VIRUSES

Thousands of Australian computers are being locked up by hackers using malicious software that encrypts files and asks for a ransom to make them available again.

Called “Cryptolocker” and “CryptoWall”, the “ransomware” comes in various forms with the CryptoWall version estimated by the government e-safety alert service Stay Smart Online to have infected approximately 20,000 Australian computers.

Computers are typically infected after victims click on a malicious link in an email purporting to be from Australia Post or Telstra. Files on their computer and network drives are then encrypted and a ransom demanded within a certain timeframe before a decryption key is supplied to unlock files. If no ransom is paid, the hackers threaten to never allow access to the files.

But new variants of the software have popped up since, making it difficult for authorities to stop it and for anti-virus and malware protection software makers to detect it on victim computers.

It’s been reported some victims have been charged as much as $1200 to unlock their files. They were often asked to pay in the virtual currency bitcoin. Even a US police department had to pay a ransom to unlock its files.

The best advice is to restore from a back-up, if available or call Living with IT who can crack the virus – 0475 411 793

67 Contacts Per Year for Each Customer? Are you Crazy??

Here are the 5 best ways to contact your customers

Keep YOU and your Business TOP OF MIND.

good communication

 Email–Email marketing can be done via e-newsletters which can be sent weekly, or every 2 weeks. You can also send broadcast emails that are sporadic, concise announcements which inform the customer about one special thing. Auto-responders,which are specific email marketing messages that are written in advance and automatically go out to subscribers on certain days, can also be set up in an email marketing system.

Direct Mail–Letters, postcards, menus, and flyers are all forms of direct mail which can be targeted geographically by zip code to your target customers or mailed to your existing customer base.

SMS Text/Mobile–With your customers’ permission you can contact them using text messages on their mobile phone. A good way to use this is to announce coupons, specials, or appointment reminders or openings.

Social Media–Social media marketing puts your rolodex on steroids. Using social media allows you to communicate with you entire database at one time depending on the method used.Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn are all great social media networking sites and a solid way to expand your prospects beyond your existing customers. Be sure that you understand the culture of each site before diving in to the conversations.

Event Marketing–A great way to invite people to a grand opening, workshop, or holiday party is to send aninvitation using use eventbrite.com to conduct an event marketing campaign. These services allow users to create tickets, contact or name tag lists, and generate automatic reminder email messages to invited guests and registered attendees.

KIDS – SETTING COMPUTER LIMITS

Setting Computer Limits Tips

Does your kid like the computer a little too much? Learn how to set limits and spot the signs of addiction.

MUM SETTING LIMITS

Is your child addicted?

  • 77% of 8- to 15-year-olds said they’d rather give up TV than give up the Internet (Pangea Media and YPulse, 2009).
  • Most parents in the United States estimate that their children spend about two hours a month on the Internet, but in reality, kids and teens are spending upwards of 20 hours a month surfing the Web (Center for Media Research, 2009).
  • About 41 percent of U.S. teens claim their parents have no idea what they are looking at online (Center for Media Research, 2009).
  • 76% of parents think the Internet helps their kids learn about other cultures and ideas (Common Sense Media and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center, 2008).

How much is too much time online?

If your children spend a large amount of time at the computer, you may wonder, are they addicted or do they simply enjoy being online? Perhaps it’s easier to frame it like this: Can your child enjoy himself – and all those things that aren’t online – when he’s away from the computer? If you’re not sure, start observing his computer habits and moods.

What is computer addiction?

All kids have trouble turning off the computer. Instant Messaging with friends seems so important, and games like World of Warcraft capture players’ attention and time — a lot of it. Virtual worlds like Club Penguin or Teen Second Life can be equally engrossing.

But some kids go beyond procrastinating – they just can’t turn off the computer. Pay attention to how your child acts when the computer is taken away. If he becomes withdrawn, moody, and uncommunicative – and the mood goes away when he’s back online – it might be time to enforce some time limits.

Why it matters

The “off switches” in kids’ brains aren’t fully developed until kids reach their early 20s.That means they need rules and structure to help them turn off the computer. Developing children need to be able to have real lives independent of their cyber ones to develop socially, emotionally, and even physically. While some kids may blossom in the freedom and anonymity of online lives, they also need the interpersonal skills that online life can’t provide.

Computer dependency can also mask problems kids are having in the real world. Dr. Maressa Hecht Orzack, director of the Computer Addiction Study Center at Boston’s McLean Hospital, says she sees concerned parents – and their kids, mostly boys ages 11 to 19 – who think their kids are addicted to computers. She finds that many of these kids aren’t developing the coping mechanisms they will need to live life happily and successfully.

Tips for parents of all kids

Establish good habits early. Kids need guidelines and rules about what is a good amount of time to spend on the computer. A good rule of thumb for elementary kids is no more than an hour a day during the week. Allotting computer time in 15- or 30-minute increments gives you a chance to check in and suggest that it’s time for a break.

  • Stress homework before computer work. Make sure your kids know that homework must be finished before they look at YouTube videos or instant message the latest gossip.
  • Limit multitasking. Media multitasking is when kids are chatting online, watching TV, playing a game, checking out Facebook, or listening to music – and trying to do homework at the same time. It’s not really known what affect this has on how kids learn, but experts do know that it takes longer to do tasks like homework when other activities are going on at the same time. And that increases daily screen time.
  • Determine if your child has an addiction or if he or she is simply spending too much time online. What happens when your children are away from the computer? Are they argumentative, depressed? Is there a marked change when they are online?
  • If you suspect a dependency, have a heart-to-heart. Have a real discussion with your kids about your concerns. This, plus some serious guidelines, may normalize the behavior. If the problem continues, or you think the computer time is masking depression or anxiety, see your child’s doctor for advice. Also, check in with the school counselor and see if there is something going on at school.
  • Don’t take away the computer. This may seem like the best solution, but it can be very damaging to addicted players, who may feel that playing online games is the only thing that brings them any enjoyment. Removing the computer can make them depressed, and possibly even violent. It can also affect the level of your child’s trust in you.
  • Don’t hesitate to get professional help. Addictions are hard to break, and dependencies can often be a child’s only coping skill. You may need someone else to help you solve this problem.

 

 

You Build Computers you Say?

YES folks, the crafty technicians at Living with IT can build you a customised PC AND then load it up with your software, transfer your data, connect your internet and printer, run your antivirus and test everything.
We listen to your needs and budget and come back with a quote.
WHY buy a computer this way? Well it seems that there are major retailers out there selling, well, crap PC’s that are not lasting more than 3 years. So here’s a few benefits of ours:
12 Month Warranty
If something goes wrong you call us and we get it fixed with little downtime
We know every part that goes into the computer.
We buy our components locally and we LOVE to support LOCAL businesses
We offer a FREE 5 minute help desk for six months after your purchase for those little niggly IT questions you might have.
We also load up a lot of FREE software as well, just as an added bonus
So remember LIVING WITH IT when you are in the market for buying a new PC or laptop (we can source the right one for you)


Cheers Paula Brand and the team
http://www.livingwithit.com.au/about-us-2

PRIME MINISTER MEETS LIVING WITH IT

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PRIME MINISTER MEETS LIVING WITH IT

I got to discuss Living with IT with the Prime Minister last week.

As a small business owner on the Gold Coast, it was great to personally hear about the plan for more flexible child care options and new small business opportunities as well as tax cuts. But Im not too keen on the lean budget coming later in the year.

Whether you love him or hate him, it was a cracker of an opportunity to talk business.

20 COMMANDMENTS: THE DOS AND DON’TS OF ONLINE SAFETY

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1. Never click on a link you did not expect to receive
The main way criminals infect PCs with malware is by luring users to click on a link or open an attachment. “Sometimes phishing emails contain obvious spelling mistakes and poor grammar and are easy to spot,” says Sidaway of Integralis. “However, targeted attacks and well-executed mass mailings can be almost indistinguishable [from genuine emails].” Social media has helped criminals profile individuals, allowing them to be much more easily targeted, he adds. “They can see what you’re interested in or what you [post] about and send you crafted messages, inviting you to click on something. Don’t.”
2. Use different passwords on different sites
With individuals typically having anything up to 100 online accounts, the tendency has become to share one or two passwords across accounts or use very simple ones, such as loved ones’ names, first pets or favourite sports teams. Indeed, research by Ofcom last month revealed that over half of UK adults (55%) use the same passwords for most, if not all, websites they visit, while one in four (26%) use birthdays or names as passwords. Any word found in the dictionary is easily crackable. Instead, says Sian John, online security consultant at Symantec, have one memorable phrase or a line from a favourite song or poem. For example: “The Observer is a Sunday newspaper” becomes “toiasn”. Add numerals and a special character thus: “T0!asn”. Now for every site you log on to, add the first and last letter of that site to the start and end of the phrase, so the password for Amazon would be “AT0!asnn”. At first glance, unguessable. But for you, still memorable.”
3. Never reuse your main email password
A hacker who has cracked your main email password has the keys to your [virtual] kingdom. Passwords from the other sites you visit can be reset via your main email account. A criminal can trawl through your emails and find a treasure trove of personal data: from banking to passport details, including your date of birth, all of which enables ID fraud.
4. Use anti-virus software
German security institute AV-Test found that in 2010 there were 49m new strains of malware, meaning that anti-virus software manufacturers are engaged in constant game of “whack-a-mole”. Sometimes their reaction times are slow – US security firm Imperva tested 40 anti-virus packages and found that the initial detection rate of a new virus was only 5%. Much like flu viruses and vaccine design, it takes the software designers a while to catch up with the hackers. Last year AV-Test published the results of a 22-month study of 27 different anti-virus suites and top-scoring packages were Bitdefender, Kaspersky and F-Secure. Meanwhile, security expert Brian Krebs published the results of a study of 42 packages which showed on average a 25% detection rate of malware – so they are not the entire answer, just a useful part of it.
5. If in doubt, block
Just say no to social media invitations (such as Facebook-friend or LinkedIn connection requests) from people you don’t know. It’s the cyber equivalent of inviting the twitchy guy who looks at you at the bus stop into your home.
6. Think before you tweet and how you share information
Again, the principal risk is ID fraud. Trawling for personal details is the modern day equivalent of “dumpster-diving”, in which strong-stomached thieves would trawl through bins searching for personal documents, says Symantec’s John. “Many of the same people who have learned to shred documents like bank statements will happily post the same information on social media. Once that information is out there, you don’t necessarily have control of how other people use it.” She suggests a basic rule: “If you aren’t willing to stand at Hyde Park Corner and say it, don’t put it on social media.”
7. If you have a “wipe your phone” feature, you should set it up
Features such as Find My iPhone, Android Lost or BlackBerry Protect allow you to remotely to erase all your personal data, should your device be lost or stolen. “Absolutely, set it up,” advises Derek Halliday of mobile security specialist Lookout. “In the case where your phone is gone for good, having a wipe feature can protect your information from falling into the wrong hands. Even if you didn’t have the foresight to sign up, many wipe your phone features can be implemented after the fact.”
8. Only shop online on secure sites
Before entering your card details, always ensure that the locked padlock or unbroken key symbol is showing in your browser, cautions industry advisory body Financial Fraud Action UK. Additionally the beginning of the online retailer’s internet address will change from “http” to “https” to indicate a connection is secure. Be wary of sites that change back to http once you’ve logged on.
9. Don’t assume banks will pay you back
Banks must refund a customer if he or she has been the victim of fraud, unless they can prove that the customer has acted “fraudulently” or been “grossly negligent”. Yet as with any case of fraud, the matter is always determined on an individual basis. “Anecdotally, a customer who has been a victim of a phishing scam by unwittingly providing a fraudster with their account details and passwords only to be later defrauded could be refunded,” explains Michelle Whiteman, spokesperson for the Payments Council, an industry body. “However, were they to fall victim to the same fraud in the future, after their bank had educated them about how to stay safe, it is possible a subsequent refund won’t be so straightforward. Under payment services regulations, the onus is on the payment-service provider to prove that the customer was negligent, not vice versa. Credit card protection is provided under the Consumer Credit Act and offers similar protection.”
10. Ignore pop-ups
Pop-ups can contain malicious software which can trick a user into verifying something. “[But if and when you do], a download will be performed in the background, which will install malware,” says Sidaway. “This is known as a drive-by download. Always ignore pop-ups offering things like site surveys on e-commerce sites, as they are sometimes where the malcode is.”
11. Be wary of public Wi-Fi
Most Wi-Fi hotspots do not encrypt information and once a piece of data leaves your device headed for a web destination, it is “in the clear” as it transfers through the air on the wireless network, says Symantec’s Sian John. “That means any ‘packet sniffer’ [a program which can intercept data] or malicious individual who is sitting in a public destination with a piece of software that searches for data being transferred on a Wi-Fi network can intercept your unencrypted data. If you choose to bank online on public Wi-Fi, that’s very sensitive data you are transferring. We advise either using encryption [software], or only using public Wi-Fi for data which you’re happy to be public – and that shouldn’t include social network passwords.”
12. Run more than one email account
Thinking about having one for your bank and other financial accounts, another for shopping and one for social networks. If one account is hacked, you won’t find everything compromised. And it helps you spot phishing emails, because if an email appears in your shopping account purporting to come from your bank, for example, you’ll immediately know it’s a fake.
13. Macs are as vulnerable as PCs
Make no mistake, your shiny new MacBook Air can be attacked too. It’s true that Macs used to be less of a target, simply because criminals used to go after the largest number of users – ie Windows – but this is changing. “Apple and Microsoft have both added a number of security features which have significantly increased the effectiveness of security on their software,” says Sidaway, “but determined attackers are still able to find new ways to exploit users on almost any platform.”
14. Don’t store your card details on websites
Err on the side of caution when asked if you want to store your credit card details for future use. Mass data security breaches (where credit card details are stolen en masse) aren’t common, but why take the risk? The extra 90 seconds it takes to key in your details each time is a small price to pay.
15. Add a DNS service to protect other devices
A DNS or domain name system service converts a web address (a series of letters) into a machine-readable IP address (a series of numbers). You’re probably using your ISP’s DNS service by default, but you can opt to subscribe to a service such as OpenDNS or Norton ConnectSafe, which redirect you if you attempt to access a malicious site, says Sian John. “This is helpful for providing some security (and parental control) across all the devices in your home including tablets, TVs and games consoles that do not support security software. But they shouldn’t be relied upon as the only line of defence, as they can easily be bypassed.”
16. Enable two-step verification
If your email or cloud service offers it – Gmail, Dropbox, Apple and Facebook do – take the trouble to set this up. In addition to entering your password, you are also asked to enter a verification code sent via SMS to your phone. In the case of Gmail you only have to enter a fresh code every 30 days or when you log on from a different computer or device. So a hacker might crack your password, but without the unique and temporary verification code
should not be able to access your account.
17. Lock your phone and tablet devices
Keep it locked, just as you would your front door. Keying in a password or code 40-plus times a day might seem like a hassle but, says Lookout’s Derek Halliday, “It’s your first line of defence.” Next-generation devices, however, are set to employ fingerprint scanning technology as additional security.
18. Be careful on auction sites
On these sites in particular, says Symantec’s Sian John, exercise vigilance. “Check the seller feedback and if a deal looks too good then it may well be,” she says. “Keep your online payment accounts secure by regularly changing your passwords, checking the bank account to which it is linked and consider having a separate bank account or credit card for use on them, to limit any potential fraud still further.”
19. Lock down your Facebook account
Facebook regularly updates its timeline and privacy settings, so it is wise to monitor your profile, particularly if the design of Facebook has changed. Firstly, in the privacy settings menu, under “who can see my stuff?” change this to “friends” (be warned: setting this to “friends of friends” means that, according to one Pew study, on average you are sharing information with 156,569 people). Also in privacy, setting “limit old posts” applies friends-only sharing to past as well as future posts. Thirdly, disable the ability of other search engines to link to your timeline.
You should also review the activity log, which shows your entire history of posts and allows you to check who can see them. Similarly, you should look at your photo albums and check you’re happy with the sharing settings for each album. In the future you may want to consider building “lists” – subsets of friends, such as close friends and family, who you might want to share toddler photographs with, rather than every Tom, Dick and Harriet.
Also, remove your home address, phone number, date of birth and any other information that could used to fake your identity. Similarly you might want to delete or edit your “likes” and “groups” – the more hackers know about you, the more convincing a phishing email they can spam you with. Facebook apps often share your data, so delete any you don’t use or don’t remember installing. Finally, use the “view as” tool to check what the public or even a particular individual can see on your profile, continue to “edit” and adjust to taste. If this all sounds rather tedious, you just might prefer to permanently delete your account.
20. Remember you’re human after all
While much of the above are technical solutions to prevent you being hacked and scammed, hacking done well is really the skill of tricking human beings, not computers, by preying on their gullibility, taking advantage of our trust, greed or altruistic impulses. Human error is still the most likely reason why you’ll get hacked.