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5 Simple Cyber Security Tips That Will Prevent Future Headaches

5 Simple Cyber Security Tips That Will Prevent Future Headaches

How often do you think about your online privacy? Do you enter your personal information and credit cards on every site that asks? Have you ever had a security incident? If not, you’re lucky — 38 people are victims of identity theft every hour, and as we integrate our real lives even further with our online lives more risks are beginning to crop up. Though it’s not possible to protect yourself from every threat online, there are some easy steps you can take to help prevent identity theft and other cyber security breaches. Here are five simple cyber security tips that can help you prevent a future headache.

1. Be Realistic About Online Privacy

First, you need to be realistic about what strangers can see about you online. True, in an ideal world, everything we put online would be kept private at all times unless we chose to share it publicly. Unfortunately, if you post or share online, particularly with a company, it’s safe to assume it’s public. There is a surprising lack of awareness surrounding this issue, especially among the younger generation, who grew up with advanced technology. 44% of Millennials believe that their personal information online is kept private at most times, a huge disconnect from the realities of cyber security. This leads to greater vulnerabilities to cyber threats and identity theft. Be aware of, and be careful about, what and where you post online — you never know who may see it.

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2. Create Unique Passwords

Let’s be honest: you’ve reused your passwords. You’ve used simple passwords. Most people reuse the same passwords over and over again. Most people know it’s better to create unique passwords for different sites and platforms, and yet only a tiny percentage of internet users actually follow through with this tip. This is a huge problem, because cybercrime affects 3,000 businesses each year, potentially exposing their customers’ and employees’ passwords. This can be devastating if you use the same password on every site. To prevent this, the best bet is to create a unique, difficult to hack password for each site. To make this a little easier, you might consider adding a cue word within the password that is related to the site, to help you remember. This tip isn’t always easy to implement, but it’s vitally important to your security.

3. Cover Your Webcam

Why does Mark Zuckerberg cover the webcam and microphone on his laptop? To prevent people from looking in or listening. Skilled hackers have the ability to gain remote access to these devices by using remote access trojans, which could potentially lead to them spying or gaining information that could be used for fraud or theft. While Zuckerberg is a bigger target than most people, it’s still not a bad idea to consider covering your webcam and microphone — just in case.

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4. Smart Syncing

It’s very convenient to sync your apps to different platforms, but if you choose to sync everything you can, you’re sending out a lot of information that could ultimately be accessed in a cyberattack. Worse, if your phone is used as a verification method, it could become vulnerable to hacking as well. Be cautious about syncing, and consider whether you really need to update your data at all times before proceeding.

5. Triple Check Site Authenticity

Cyber criminals are very good at making websites and emails look legitimate, even when they aren’t. Double and triple check site authenticity before you proceed—there are several signs to look for when trying to spot a possible hack, including:

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  • The domain name is spelled incorrectly (hackers often create fake websites that appear extremely similar)
  • A payment site without a padlock symbol displayed by your browser
  • A site that is full of ads that don’t match the site
  • A redirect that asks you to provide login information before entering (these sites often front as social media sites)
  • A link within an email that has a phony or suspicious signature

Go with your gut, and back off if anything looks suspicious!

Do Your Best

Implementing these steps can really help to reduce your chances of a cyberattack. It’s important to remember, however, that no system is perfect, and even if you follow these guidelines, you might still get hacked one day. You can do everything on this list to help prevent future headaches, but unfortunately, you may still run into problems. What’s important is doing your best and taking proactive steps for preventing fraud and identity theft. Don’t just resign yourself to potential threats, fight against them! It’s much easier to prevent problems than it is to fix them. Set yourself up for success by practicing safe cyber activity and taking these precautions — if you don’t, you could find yourself dealing with the consequences in the near future.

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Featured photo credit: Blue Coat Photos (CC BY-SA 2.0 License) via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 11, 2019

8 Most Effective Games and Apps to Learn to Type Fast

8 Most Effective Games and Apps to Learn to Type Fast

Computers and cell phones have become an integrated tool in our professional and personal lives that the original methods of using pen and paper may not be so common anymore.

Although our old-school methods of note taking may not have entirely left us, technology is advancing with no intention of slowing down; iPads are moving into service industries, video calls are taking the place of in-person interviews, and store receipts are making its way into our email inbox – all of which requires the skill of typing.

Learning a new skill doesn’t have to be boring and never had to be. Thankfully, there are effective games and apps that can help you learn to type fast with swift precision and accuracy.

Why Typing Fast Matters?

Learning how to type fast is a game changer. In fact, you can save 21 days per year by typing fast!

Although shaving several minutes from curating a long email or texting paragraphs in a text message may not seem to be of great significance, the minutes soon do eventually add up and the long list of tasks then evolve into frustration. By the end of the day, time is being wasted, and the work pile is stacked high over your head.

Why not alleviate some of those frustrations through practice and dedicating your spare time to build muscle memory?

Learning a simple skillset like speed typing can drastically improve other essential areas in life including time-management and prioritization. Not only does it help you efficiently complete tasks at work and in your personal life, but it also boosts your productivity.

8 Most Effective Typing Games and Apps

Everyone learns at different speeds and uses various methods. While some work better under pressure and tight deadlines, others thrive when given ample amounts of time to learn and soak in the knowledge that is being provided. Despite the number of resources that are available in the hollow corners of the internet, it’s all about finding one source that helps you learn at your fullest potential.

Whether you’re a keyboard ninja or not, here are some effective typing games and apps that allow you to test your speed, accuracy, and maybe shoot some spaceships along the way.

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For Beginners

1. Speed Typing Online

    What’s more fun than to type to the story of Alice in Wonderland or the lyrics to “Hey Jude”? Speed Typing Online is an online typing game that allows you to dive into the creative and familiar world of famous books, fables, songs, and even hone your skills in data entry.

    The bright blue frame holds the text, which then turns green after punching in the accurate keystrokes. After the end of the personal timer, a statistics page appears to show you your typed words per minute, accuracy, correct and incorrect entries, and error rate.

    2. Typing Trainer

      Typing Trainer

      is another online platform suited for beginner typists looking for step-by-step lessons. Learning the keys on a keyboard can confusing especially for those who aren’t as familiar or getting adjusted to typing on a computer keyboard.

      Typing Trainer has a collection of step-by-step tutorials that covers everything from sentence drills, introduction to new keys as the lessons progress, and skills test. The Typing Trainer specifically highlights unique features in each lesson including a warm-up section where the user begin to build muscle memory and learn to type without looking at the keyboard.

      The website is also programed to identify difficulties the user is facing when typing specific words or sentences.

      3. TapTyping – Typing Trainer

        There is the feeling of physically typing on a keyboard and then there’s the feeling of typing on a touch screen mobile device.

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        Since the use of cell phones has become closely integrated into our everyday lives, learning to type on a mobile is much of a skillset as it is to type on a computer. The mobile typing app, TapTyping – Typing Trainer, allows users to practice while on-the-go making it perfect for commuters who want to practice typing during their down time.

        The app allows you to challenge other typists around the world with TapTyping’s global leaderboard and test your skills by taking advanced lessons. There’s always room for improvement and with the app, you’ll be able to find your mistakes by watching a heat map of your finger strokes.

        For professional writers and programmers

        4. The Most Dangerous Writing App

          Suitable for writers facing a creative block or on a tight-deadline, the Most Dangerous Writing App is a website that forces your fingers to type as quickly as your ideas.

          If you stop longer than 5 seconds, everything you had written will slowly disappear from the screen.

          Sessions are timed from 3 minutes to 20 minutes, or can go from 75 to 1667 words. This online app is perfect to brain dump ideas, write a chapter of a manuscript you’ve been stuck on, or help with procrastination.

          If you’re up to the challenge, try the hardcore mode – an alternative option where a single letter appears on the screen at a time. This level prevents you from seeing the entire word, sentences, or even correct any spelling or grammatical mistakes until the timer is complete.

          If you’re wondering, copying and pasting is not an option until each the end of each session.

          5. The Typing Cat

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            Looking to upgrade your typing skills? Also working as a personal tutor, the Typing Cat has a list of regular typing courses with the option to try other lessons with more complexity such as HTML. Learning to type code is a another valulable skillset worth adding.

            Even with disregarded interest in the coding world, using the code course enhances your typing skills and allows your fingers to familiarize itself with uncommon word combinations and placement of punctuations on a keyboard.

            The coding course can be difficult even for typing whizzes, but it’s all a part of muscle memory. According Psychology Today,[1] only a handful of people actually learn how to type by looking at an actual keyboard, while a majority of the population locate specific keys intuitively through muscle memory.

            Available courses include EcmaScript 6, HTML 5, and CSS 3.

            Fun typing games

            6. ZType — Space Invaders Meet Webster

              Remember playing the iconic 70’s game that allowed you to shoot tiny purple and green aliens from one end of the screen to the other with a two-bullet laser? It’s hard to believe that Space Invaders just turned 40 , but you can still get the same adrenaline rush with ZType, a typing game with the same shooting concept.

              Ztype works in waves – stages that must be cleared but instead of aliens, you must type out the words before the missiles destroy your ship at the bottom of the screen. Every so often, longer and mor complex words would appear and if the words are not typed in the allotted time, a series of letters will disperse like missles.

              The game is quick on the fingers and will still have your heart pumping until the very end.

              7. Epistory – Typing Chronicles

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                Although this game does cost money to purchase, it is worth the investment if you’re looking for a refreshing and alternative mode to learning how to type fast.

                Epistory – Typing Chronicles is a role-playing action and adventure game of a young girl riding a fox in a magical and fictional realm; together they combat enemies in the shapes and forms of words.

                Once you’re starterted, you almost forget you’re playing a typing game. The paper craft art aesthetics of the game has you captivated by the vibrant colors and character’s storyline, while having you build your typing skills.

                8. Daily Quote Typing

                  Need some inspiration? Say no more.

                  Daily Quote Typing is one of many gammes available on Wordgames.com – a website that offers a variety of typing games ranging from different levels based on your experience.

                  With Daily Quote Typing, users are able to type out inspirational quotes by famous leaders, inventors, and innovators such as Mark Twain and Albert Einstein.

                  Bottom Line

                  At the end of the day, discipline and patience is what teaches to type faster. It comes down to making that commitment to improving not only your typing abilities, but in a lifelong skill that benefits other areas in life.

                  By practicing daily and using effective games and apps, it’s only a matter of time before keystrokes will become second nature and your brain will adapt to learning other skills faster.

                  Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

                  Reference

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