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7 Online Safety Tips for College Students

Heading back to campus soon? Here are seven tips that will get your digital house in order and keep you safe online this semester.
Don't Download Entertainment From Third-Party App Stores
Beware of Phishing Campaigns
Watch Out for 'Evil Twin' Hotspots
Rethink Your Social Media Presence
Only Do Business with HTTPS Sites
Opt for Two-Factor Authentication
Download All Updates and Use Backups
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Parents naturally worry about their kids leaving for college – their physical safety high on the list. But in the digital world, college students are at risk, too, in the forms of identity theft and online fraud.

According to the FTC's "Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book," released in February, much of the crime revolves around fraudulent wire transfers or attacks on credit cards and gift cards. The FTC found reports of fraud around student loans increased by 119% in 2018. In addition, 43% of younger people ages 20 to 29 reported losing money to fraud compared with only 15% of those ages 70 to 79.

The good news: There are many practical steps students can take to protect themselves online.

It starts with some real-life common sense. "Student should physically lock down their laptops when they are not in their dorm rooms, and keep sensitive information, such as Social Security cards and birth certificates, locked in a safe," says Paige Hanson, chief of identity education for Norton LifeLock.

Next on the online-safety list? Read on.  

 

 
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