Digital safety is an important concern for anyone who uses the internet, however, there are common misconceptions that many people believe about digital safety. These myths can give people a false sense of security and lead them to engage in risky online behaviour or prevent them from taking basic steps to protect themselves.
Many people don’t have a thorough understanding of how digital technologies and the internet work. This lack of digital literacy can make them more susceptible to believing misinformation. Even if it’s not true, people may be more likely to believe information if it confirms their existing beliefs or biases. Some people may not be used to evaluating information critically. They may not be aware of the importance of fact-checking information they receive online or may not know how to identify reliable sources.
When people are feeling scared or anxious, they are often more likely to seek out information that can help them understand and alleviate their fears. However, they may be more susceptible to misinformation and myths that seem to offer a quick and easy solution to their concerns. For example, if someone is worried about being hacked, they may be more likely to believe a sensational story about a new and dangerous cyber threat, even if there is little to no evidence to support it.
One common myth that many people believe is that they don’t need to worry about digital safety because they have nothing “valuable” online.
The reality is that even if you don’t store sensitive information on public or private social media accounts, your online presence can still be used for identity theft, the spread of malware, launching phishing attacks against your contacts, financial loss, and damage to personal or professional reputation.
Antivirus software is, in fact, not enough to keep you safe online. While antivirus software is an important layer of protection, it is not enough on its own. In addition to this software, you also need to use strong passwords, up-to-date software, and caution when opening emails and clicking on links.
If you believe that you don’t need to worry about digital safety because you only visit trusted websites, you should know that even legitimate websites can be hacked or compromised. In addition, attackers can create fake websites that look exactly like legitimate ones in order to trick users into entering their personal information.
A lot of people believe that their personal information is safe on social media so long as their account is private, however, social media platforms can still share your information with third-party advertisers and data brokers, even if your account is private. Private information can still be leaked if your account is hacked or if you accidentally accept a friend request from a fake profile.
Although a strong password is crucial, it is not enough to keep you safe online. You also need to utilize two-factor authentication, avoid using the same password for multiple accounts, and be wary of phishing attacks.
These are just a few examples of common myths about digital safety. Believing in these myths can make people feel invulnerable to cyber threats, causing them to let their guard down. Therefore, it’s important to stay informed about digital safety practices and to be skeptical of misinformation. By taking the time to verify information and using critical thinking skills, people can reduce their risk of falling victim to cyber threats.