2021 is here. As people begin to shift back to work, going to school, or just moving on from 2020, it’s a good time to check your tech devices and reflect on your technology habits. Here are five tips to get your tech ready and your online practices prepared for 2021.

1. Accept those updates

Update prompts can be annoying. However, they are an essential part of a good online experience and can also can bring new features/fixes to ensure your devices are in good condition. Set a time and update all the devices you use. You could update them just before you head off to sleep or while you’re getting ready for the day.

2. Do a privacy checkup

People are increasingly submitting more of their data – most likely without thinking – everyday. So it’s important to know about the simple things that will improve your privacy and help establish good online safety behaviours. Take the time to go through your social media accounts and review your privacy settings. Sometimes it’s easy to forget  settings like ‘everyone’ can see your phone number on Facebook, or that ‘everyone’ can see what videos you liked on TikTok.

Here are some links to privacy tools and guides for common services.

Netsafe also has advice on how to manage your privacy settings on social media and how to improve your online privacy.

3. Change passwords

Are you still using the same password from 2016? If so, it’s definitely time to give them a refresh! We’ve got some great advice on how to create strong passwords. A general rule is to mix letters, numbers and symbols to make something unique. If you struggle to remember passwords, why not try using a password manager?

4. Pause, verify & share

Before you share information this year, pause and verify it before sharing it with people. There can be dangerous consequences of sharing fake news – especially if it’s related to health. You can ask yourself: Who created this post? Where did they get this info from? Is it traceable? If you want to learn more about fake news – click here.

5.Have fun!

Not everything about the digital world is scary and dangerous. Digital tech brings so many wonderful opportunities to all of us. Use it to connect with people, learn new skills, experience new things, and explore the world while staying safe. Check out some of the activities we’ve found here.

CONTACT NETSAFE

If you’re concerned about the immediate safety of you or someone else, please call 111. If you want help or expert incident advice, you can contact us. Our service is free, non-judgemental and available seven days a week.

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