Freshers Week – Stay Safe Online

Being at university or college is about studying hard and enjoying the experience but it's also about taking more responsibility for yourself.

Posted on 5 September 2018

There are definitely things you need to do to keep yourself, your finances and your devices free from harm online and offline, whether you’re studying, out having fun or relaxing.

We’ve teamed up with experts at Get Safe Online to bring together some top tips to start you off:-

  • Don’t ‘Unlock’ your Smartphone - You’re also opening your phone up to dodgy apps and malicious software that can infect your phone and damage or delete the data you have on it.
  • Protect your ID, and don’t over share - Never reveal passwords or provide confidential information in return for freebies.
  • Protect your reputation - What goes online stays online, so think about what you’re posting and how it might affect your future job hunting.
  • Be on the lookout for fraud - Fake texts, emails, calls and posts claiming to be from your bank, student loan provider or HMRC could cost you your money or your identity.
  • Look after your tech and how you connect - Avoid using wifi hotspots for accessing confidential or financial sites as there’s no guarantee they’re secure. Turn off location services to keep your whereabouts to yourself.
  • Practise safe dating - If you’re dating online, use reputable apps and keep the conversation on the app. Remember that not everyone is who they say they are. Don’t be afraid to block or say ‘no’.
  • Never be put under pressure to do something you disagree, or feel uncomfortable, with. This might be sending, or publishing, intimate photos, harmful pranking, extreme content, hacking social media accounts or any kind of radicalisation.
  • Check out accommodation in person, before parting with any money, and make sure who you’re paying is authentic. If you pay a person or company you don’t know by bank transfer and it’s a fraud, it’s unlikely you’ll get your money back.
  • There’s a fine line between gaming and gambling - For some people, a bit of harmless betting can turn into a habit.
  • Keep your coding legal - Heavyweight coders are sometimes targeted by cyber criminals who need their skills. If you get approached, think about the consequences to yourself and others.

Find comprehensive, easy-to-follow advice about online safety at www.getsafeonline.org/safefresher

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