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Please share your tips on online security at home with Cyber Streetwise

(36 Posts)
AnnMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 22-Jan-14 08:26:12

Cyber Streetwise say "If you're reading this you probably already do lots of things online like shopping, banking and using social networks. Your children probably play games on a console, smartphone or tablet, and chat to friends through messaging apps.

'Cyber Streetwise' is a new government campaign that aims to change the way people protect themselves while online, in order to avoid falling victim to cyber criminals. The campaign has wide support for across industry with more than 20 organisations involved, including Sophos, Facebook, Financial Fraud Action UK, RBS, Trend Micro and Vodafone to name a few.

Psychology and tech experts tell us that people don't always pay as much attention while online as they do when in the 'real' world. For example, you wouldn't leave your handbag open while shopping, so you should also be careful when entering your credit card details online. The speed of technology means we often forget the simple measures to be 'Cyber Streetwise'".

Now they'd love to hear what approaches Mumsnetters take regarding online security at home - whether you're totally on top of this or don't give it a second thought....

To get you thinking about this, here are some example questions...do feel free to add any comment about this topic though - all opinion welcome!

~ Who is in charge of making sure everything is safe and secure in your family?
~ Do you use the same simple password(s) all the time, and when did you last change them? Or do you have a complex system of passwords to use?
~ How many computers and other devices do you have that connect to the internet?
~ How often do you shop online, and what types of e-shops do you visit?
~ What do your children understand about online safety and security? How do you talk to them about this? What age were they?
~ Any other tips?

Thanks
MNHQ

PS: For more information on any aspect of the above please visit Cyber Streetwise and find out more here: www.cyberstreetwise.com.
If you have a question then you can find them on Facebook and Twitter too.

I think there are two slightly different issues here. One is security of information and financial stuff and the other is personal safety. I am answering mainly about the first.

1. DH and I both get involved in security.
2.We use lots of passwords, not simple though not hugely complex.A mix of upper/lower case words and numbers. I have a central record of log ins and passwords which I recognise is a week spot if we were burgled by a hacker.
3. Two laptops, 2 phones, 1 iPod, 1ipad, 2 PCs, 1 xbox, 1 digi box so 10 devices.
4. All on line banking (DH uses first direct plus as additional security), teenage DC have on line banking, we all shop on line a lot. I am very careful about secure payments and if in doubt use paypal.
5. DC (15 and 18) are well versed in on line safety and security.

DoctorTwo Iran Wed 22-Jan-14 16:48:37

I use HTTPS Everywhere from eff.org, AdBlock Plus, NoScript, Flashblock, and, to stop tracking (and other) cookies Ghostery all as add-ons for Firefox.

Also, after every session before shutting down I run CCleaner. I put the same configuration on DD2s laptop because she asked for advice. My antivirus is set to update automatically.

BohemianGirl Wed 22-Jan-14 19:24:33

I look at those questions and just think - sorry, stereotype, Nigerian scammer is reading and looking me up on the electoral roll.

KnitActually Wed 22-Jan-14 22:13:07

I like the adverts, there are two around where I work. I became very password conscious when I was contacted by a trusted website to say they had lost my password. I changed all the passwords, started using different email addresses for most important sites, and different passwords too.

KnitActually Wed 22-Jan-14 22:13:56

I should say that the trusted website that lost my data wasn't mumsnet smile

mercibucket Thu 23-Jan-14 16:30:13

i feel a bit helpless about security on phones, and although i passw8rd protect i dont know much about what else can be done. the pc is fine but we never use it anymore!

Even if you don't intend to use online banking, set it up anyway. Populate it with your passwords and security questions before some arsehole intercepts a bank letter, sets it up themselves and then uses it to launder several thousand pounds or empties your account.

We learnt this the hard way with DS's first current account. It took over a year, several subject access requests and two complaints with the financial ombudsman to find out what had happened, why DS's account had been closed without notice or permission and why he wasn't able to open another one anywhere else. angry

The ombudsman said fraudsters need 'surprisingly few' details to set up internet banking.

yelwah Thu 23-Jan-14 20:25:24

Passwords, most of the stuff said about them is complete rot.

There is nothing wrong with writing them down on paper, a burglar is really not going to go through your desk looking for them.

Length is far more important than 'complexity'. See this https://xkcd.com/936/ but don't use the example given.

Faithless12 Thu 23-Jan-14 21:37:54

Yelwah, but some fraud is committed by those known to you. Cases I've heard of normally are children taking from their parents.

telsa Thu 23-Jan-14 22:27:21

I suppose it is me who does security and any monetary transactions online. Have become a bit lax lately.

I have a load of passwords and a constantly forget them, which is a huge bane of my life.

We have 2 computers and one kindle and one ipad connected to the web.

I do banking online.

I shop eBay and Amazon and abebooks. That is about it really.

DCs are 8 and 5 and don't know much about security. They have broached cyber bullying at school and I terrify them on apps to make sure they go nowhere near in app purchases.

PM'd you AnnMNHQ

arfishy Fri 24-Jan-14 00:24:40

~ Who is in charge of making sure everything is safe and secure in your family?

I am. I work in IT Security.

~ Do you use the same simple password(s) all the time, and when did you last change them? Or do you have a complex system of passwords to use?

I have unique passwords for each online account - non dictionary words, usually a mnemonic. I store my passwords in an encypted app on my phone. My phone is set to be wiped if I lose it.

~ How many computers and other devices do you have that connect to the internet?
We have 2 x work laptops, 3 x personal laptops, 5 smartphones, 2 x 3DS, 1 Xbox 360, 1 PS3, 3 x ipod touch & 1 Internet TV.

~ How often do you shop online, and what types of e-shops do you visit?
Daily - I try to buy most things online.

~ What do your children understand about online safety and security?
I block all internet devices from inappropriate sites using OpenDNS. DD (11) is not allowed internet access in her bedroom. As she has got old enough to have her own phone, which is outside of my internet filter I've taught her about how to be safe online rather than trusting that anything inappropriate will be blocked. Safety includes not revealing personal details at all, not trusting people online are who they say they are, appropriate searching, not sharing login information, not clicking popups, how to tell if a message is spam, saving any text messages which are mean to show me (thankfully it hasn't happened yet) etc. She's done online cyber safety courses and has regular sessions at school.

How do you talk to them about this? What age were they?
We talk all the time - it's part of our daily life in the same way that we talk about healthy eating, personal hygiene, looking after pets etc. She started cyber safety lessons at around 6 and they keep going and evolving as she gets older and uses the technology differently. I keep on top of the issues for teens and tweens so I keep up with it too.

I've spoken with her about photos - no instragram/snapchat or apps like that are allowed for now and she's not allowed Facebook. Sites like youtube and google are set to safesearch. I run my own minecraft server for her (which keeps me in control of what's going on) which she has set the rules on, so she's learning how to moderate access and run a safe minecraft server too.

We talk about which sites are safe and which are harvesting your email address/would download toolbars/expose you to much older children - she asks me before she can join a site and generally I say no. She's got an account on Moshi Monsters and I keep an eye on friend requests (ditto minecraft, I have to add players to the whitelist).

I try to keep a balance between trusting her to speak to me and locking things down. My instinct is to prevent access to bad stuff at all costs, but I know she needs to be taught how to be safe and make these decisions herself.

Paintyfingers Fri 24-Jan-14 00:50:58

I'm going to follow this thread closely - DS is 2 and we have no controls yet.

BrowneSugar Fri 24-Jan-14 07:14:52

Greatest respect Arfishy.

DrNick Fri 24-Jan-14 07:15:45

Don't meet random mumsnetters? ;)

Theimpossiblegirl Fri 24-Jan-14 13:00:09

~ Who is in charge of making sure everything is safe and secure in your family?
It comes down to me as I'm the most confident and use computers more than DH.
~ Do you use the same simple password(s) all the time, and when did you last change them? Or do you have a complex system of passwords to use?
We have different passwords for lots of things but I do forget them sometimes or get them mixed up, which is a pain.
~ How many computers and other devices do you have that connect to the internet?
3 laptops, 2 hudls, a kindle fire and 3 mobile phones between 4 of us.
~ How often do you shop online, and what types of e-shops do you visit?
All the time and I use a wide range, including Amazon, supermarkets. ebay, Joe Browns, Littlewoods, Very, Debenhams a dn lots more.
~ What do your children understand about online safety and security? How do you talk to them about this? What age were they?
We are always discussing esafety as it is very current. They are pretty savvy but the main rule is if you're not sure, ask, so I hope we're pretty covered. their school is also very proactive so they'll often come home and discuss things.
~ Any other tips?
Talk, share, don't be scared of the internet, it's a wonderful thing when used safely.

TaraLott Fri 24-Jan-14 22:40:07

~ What do your children understand about online safety and security? How do you talk to them about this? What age were they?
~ Any other tips?

Don't get over involved with people you don't know.
Never meet strangers you have 'met' online.

SaltySeaBird Sat 25-Jan-14 12:00:07

Respect to Arfishy! That is the sort of set up I'd love but time, lack of knowledge and bad practices make it unlikely.

As the slightly more technical of the two of us Internet security is down to me. But we do use the same password for most things (or variations of it). My DH sometimes just uses the worst possible passwords.

Connected to the Internet we have two desktops, two laptops, iPad, 3DS, Xbox 360, 2 smart phones, Internet TV. Plenty of friends family have our wifi code for their devices when they are here too.

I shop a lot online. Mainly Amazon, eBay, Ocado, Sainsburys. But in an average month you could add another 5-10 stores depending on what we are buying.

My DD is too young to access the Internet but I'll be teaching her about online safety as soon as she can independently use any device connected to the Internet.

Varya Sat 25-Jan-14 20:10:56

I have large Doberman dog, who is aware instantly he hears the slightest sound. He patrols the garden perimeter looking for anything unusual. He is better than any security system and needs no password!

NettleTea Sun 26-Jan-14 11:34:04

~ Who is in charge of making sure everything is safe and secure in your family?
Just me

~ Do you use the same simple password(s) all the time, and when did you last change them? Or do you have a complex system of passwords to use?
Variations on a theme

~ How many computers and other devices do you have that connect to the internet?
6 things

~ How often do you shop online, and what types of e-shops do you visit?
lots, if not all apart from grocery. Ebay, gumtree, store shops and internet specific stores like amazon

~ What do your children understand about online safety and security? How do you talk to them about this? What age were they?
13 year old certainly aware, 7 year old with some kind of SEN not so aware - his stuff is pretty much clamped down hard.

~ Any other tips?
No tips, but my clever friend Steve May designed all the posters!!

MumofDockgreen Wed 29-Jan-14 10:20:06

I am a South London Safer Schools Officer and a deal with online bullying all the time.
Only a couple of tips from the Thin Blue Line as I am working on a presentation for kids so should get back to it.
If your child reports online bullying do not delete the messages but screen shot the page. Pls do not edit out your child's mistakes and swearing etc it looks pretty obvious as often the replies don't make sense.

Use the report abuse button. We get anonymous reports this way and sometimes can do some background work to stop the abuse.

The 1st officer you report to may not appear too interested as they will not be investigating. Please do not throw up your hands in disgust we are under the cosh. Often theses reports are then sent to a Schools Officer or CID and we are trained and will get back to you. Sometimes our work load gets the better of us. Find out who has been allocated the crime and contact details. Ask for e-mail address as we can pick up messages at other locations and call u back. Please make it easy for us to get back to you. (If I don't get an answer I go on to the next piece of crime or out on patrol. If that happens over a few days. I will wait until you contact me)
E-mails times that you can speak to us. Our number comes out as private.
Sometimes the abuse isn't a crime we will try and work with you to come to some sort of solution.
If you teenager is in London you should have a dedicated officer for your Secondary School, ask who that is. If not ask for one from your local Divisional Commander.

AnnMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 30-Jan-14 15:37:03

Hello - just to share we are also hosting a Q&A on cyber security with National Fraud Authority and Dr Sue Black - do add a question if you can thanks

wyrdyBird Thu 30-Jan-14 17:34:21

Well, this is the advice I tend to give if asked...

* If shopping online, make sure you're happy about the reputation of the company you're dealing with.
* Look out for the https padlock before you enter personal data or credit card details.

* Think about who has your data, what they might do with it, or what a third party might want to do with it. Don't over share personal information in a public arena.

* Do not click on email links,or open attachments, if you are not expecting them, or feel the slightest doubt about them.

* Be extremely careful with any email purporting to come from a bank. Mostly, just delete. Keeps it simple!

* Use good AV, keep it up to date, and scan regularly

I try to follow the advice too!

kelzw84 Mon 03-Feb-14 01:30:05

Im the one in charge of safety and security in mine. although i no if i need help i can always call my stepdad who luckily lives just next door.

all my passwords are different and have numbers, letters, capital letters and symbols in them and are changed every 8-12 weeks.
we have 3 gadgets in our house. one mobile phone and 2 tablets.

I use mine for networking. online shopping and whatever else takes my fancy.
all gadgets are protected my password/pattern and pin numbers and also have antivirus and trackers on incase lost/stolen.

For online shopping its mainly ebay and amazon although will occassonally use other sites.

My son who is 8years old and has his own tablet has parental controls set on his and knows if he is unsure about any site to show me and ask first.
He knows not to join any sites before asking first or to give out any information.
We often speak about security and safety and does lessons in school on it.
He is only allowed to access the internet for 60minutes a day, although if doing homework i allow him longer.
he has to be in the same room as me when using the internet and if he wants to take his tablet to his room i disconnect the wifi and click to forget the details so that he cannot connect without me knowing.

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