When accessing the Internet, it is important to be aware of Internet Security issues such as viruses, hackers, and privacy threats. There are several things you can do to protect yourself from such threats, as shown below.
Families with kids who use the Internet should also use a content filter solution to manage the type of content their kids can access.
Take action immediately if you suspect your computer has been compromised
Report any unauthorised access to the police. Change your passwords immediately and contact your bank if you suspect personal financial information has been stolen.
Use strong passwords
Choose passwords that are not easy to guess, and change your passwords regularly.
Stop and think before sharing information or clicking on links and attachments
Be careful about the personal or financial information you share with people online. Don't open suspicious emails or attachments from unknown sources, and don't click on links in emails that request your personal details.
When online your computer is potentially vulnerable to malicious Internet users. A Firewall is software and/or hardware used to protect one or more computers connected to the Internet from hackers and other unwanted intrusions. Firewall FAQs
A computer virus is a program or piece of malicious code that can have many negative effects on your computer. Protecting your computer against viruses is easy with Antivirus software. Antivirus FAQs
Content filtering software helps you control the content accessed from your computer. It can be used to restrict and monitor Web sites, Email, Chat, IM and newsgroups that may be offensive and/or inappropriate for children. The Internet Industry Association has approved a list of Internet Content Filters which have been independently tested and meet the criteria outlined in the IIA content code. Content Filtering FAQs
Spyware and adware
Adware, also known as an Adbot, can profile your online surfing and spending habits and pop up those annoying ad windows. Spyware, also known as Malware, is potentially far more dangerous than Adware because it can record your keystrokes, history, passwords and other confidential and private information. Spyware and adware FAQs
Never reply to junk mail or emails from someone you don't know. This might result in someone sending you inappropriate emails or spam. You might miss that crucial email from a friend because of this! Never send a photograph of yourself or any personal information to a stranger online. Email FAQs
"Spam" is unwanted and unsolicited junk email on the Internet. The Spam Act 2003 was established to regulate spam (defined as an 'unsolicited commercial electronic message') sent to or by Australian end users. Spam Filters FAQs
Kids on the Internet
To make sure the Internet remains a safe place for your family, it's very important to set family rules for using the Internet and insist your kids keep you informed of their online activities.
Make sure they know how to stay safe and encourage them to report anything suspicious. For further information about online safety go to the Australian Government’s Cybersafety Website
Here's a list of common sense rules for Internet safety all kids should be encouraged to follow:
- I won't give out information about myself or my family, such as my address or phone number, without getting my parents' permission.
- If I receive something online that makes me feel uncomfortable, I won't respond; I'll leave that area right away and tell my parents.
- I won't meet with anyone I meet online without getting my parents' permission first.
- I will never send anybody my picture or anything else without first checking with my parents.
- I won't open or accept emails, files, links, URLs, or other things from people I don't really know or trust.
- I won't give out my password to anyone but my parents or guardian - not even to my best friend.
Kids and chat services
Chatting online, emailing and instant messaging can be fun. But sometimes, bad people spoil that fun. To keep having fun online and be safe, just remember these points when you chat online:
- People you might meet online may not be who they say they are (someone who says they're a 12 year-old girl could really be a 40 year-old man).
- Never give your password to anyone else, even your best friend (keep it secret).
- Always tell your parents or another adult you trust if something on the Internet is confusing, scary or makes you feel icky.
- Never reply to messages or chat if someone says something that makes you feel uncomfortable or weird, just leave the chat room straight away.
- Always tell your parent or guardian if you see rude language or nasty pictures when you are online.
- Fill out any online forms with your parents and never go into an area that asks for money, personal information (like your full name) or a credit card.
- Remember that if someone makes an offer that seems too good to be true, it probably is.
- You can read more about the dangers of chat and how to be safe online at chatdanger.com.
Cool sites for kids
You can still have lots of fun on the Net with these cool sites. Check out the following links for lots of fun and interesting sites made especially for kids:
Take the steps below to protect yourself from online threats and fraudulent activity on your computer. This will not only save you time and trouble should something go wrong, but also ensures that you are getting the best online experience when using the internet.
Take note of the following ways to protect yourself:
- NEVER click on pop-up alerts! Don't even click on the cross to delete the pop-up alert as this may result in getting more pop-ups. Instead, right click on the associated taskbar tab and choose CLOSE.
- Use reputable pop-up blocker software to avoid pop-ups on your computer.
- Keep your computer updated with the latest anti-virus and anti-spy ware software. Also use a good firewall.
- Stop and think before you click on links or attachments. Don’t open suspicious emails or attachments from unknown sources. Don’t click on links in emails requesting your personal details
- Check your “sent items” file or "outgoing" email. If you find unknown messages in your out box, it is a sign that your computer may be infected with spyware, and may be a part of the botnet. This isn’t foolproof: many spammers have learned to hide their unauthorised access.
- Stop and think before you share any personal or financial information about yourself, your friends or family online.
- NEVER rely on the contact details provided in a pop-up message. Instead, find your anti-virus vendor's contact details through an internet search
- Avoid questionable websites.
- Get a stronger password and change it regularly
- Configure your Wireless Network Securely. If you are using a wireless router/modem, enable the security features with a strong password. Use WPA or WPA2 encryption on your Wi-Fi equipment (WEP is an older standard and is less secure). Refer to your router/modem manual or contact your ISP for further details.
Please refer to the Australian Government website for further information on how to protect yourself.
How to spot a scam or hoax email?
SCAMwatch, a website run by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has warned that consumers should be on the look-out for fake anti-virus alerts. Messages such as "Warning—your computer is infected! System detected virus activities. They may cause critical system failure. Click here to get available software” have recently increased. They commonly appear after you open an email attachment, download files, visit websites or click on a pop-up advertisement – and often contain viruses
- Internet scams will always seem too good to be true.
- A hoax email will deliberately attempt to try and dupe, trick or deceive a user into providing confidential information.
- Refer to the Australian Government Website for email scams, fraud and latest updates
- Virgin Mobile would NEVER request its customers to confirm any personal details, update or divulge any information that is confidential via email.
- Both hoax emails and websites will attempt to gain trust and legitimacy by including a Virgin Mobile logo.
- Remember that Virgin Mobile will NEVER send such emails to you at any time.
Updating your computer
Ensuring your operating system remains up to date is an important step in securing your computer from online threats. Both Microsoft and Apple offer regular updates, or patches, to improve performance and provide protection against new types of internet threats.
- Microsoft Windows
- Apple Mac OS X – use ‘Software Update’ within Finder
You can learn more about how to secure your computer at http://icode.net.au This website, coordinated by the Internet Industry Association, offers practical tips to help guard against internet fraud, how to protect your personal information online and how to protect your computer.
In addition, the Australian Government has a range of information on their cyber security website at http://www.staysmartonline.gov.au.
The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) is the statutory body responsible for regulating broadcasting, the internet, radio communications and telecommunications. The ACMA operates a range of cyber safety and cyber security education and awareness programs designed for children, parents and teachers. To learn more about these programs, visit http://www.cybersmart.gov.au.
IIA Family Friendly ISP Program
Virgin Broadband is pleased to be a participant in the Internet Industry Association's "Family Friendly ISP" program. Australian ISPs bearing this seal have agreed to comply with the IIA Codes of Practice. The Codes of Practice are registered with and monitored by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).
Content filtering software helps you control the content accessed from your computer. It can be used to restrict and monitor Web sites, Email, Chat, IM and newsgroups that may be offensive and/or inappropriate for children. The Internet Industry Association has approved list of internet content filters which have been independently tested and meet the criteria outlined in the IIA content code.
If you're a parent considering Virgin Broadband at home, you may wish to read the material on the IIA website that contains useful information about software and tools to help you keep your internet family friendly.