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Tips to help protect your privacy online

It’s great to connect with friends and family on social media and so convenient to shop and bank online—but these activities can pose certain privacy risks. The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada has put together a few tips to help you to protect your personal information while still enjoying the benefits of being online.

Protect your Privacy Online

Think before you share on social networks

Avoid sharing too many personal details with large numbers of people. Refrain from posting vacation pictures telling everyone your house is empty and you are gone for two months!

Adopt good security

Install antivirus and security software and keep this software updated. Take some time to learn about the security and privacy settings of your Internet browser and keep it up to date.

Find more information on how to Protect your Privacy Online.

Protect Personal Information on Mobile

Prevent unauthorized access to devices

Use automatic lock features and complex, hard-to-guess passwords to protect your mobile devices.

Prevent eavesdropping

Secure your home Wi-Fi and avoid using public hotspots for transactions that involve sensitive personal information such as banking.

Pay attention to app permissions

Before you can download a new app on your phone it likely wants you to give it permission to access information on your device such as location, contacts, device ID, camera or media files. Before you click “I agree,” make sure you understand why the company is seeking access and what it plans to do with any information it collects.

Find more information on Protecting personal information on your mobile devices.

Prevent Identity Theft Online

Be ultra-careful with your Social Insurance Number

Avoid sharing your Social Insurance Number (both online and in person) unless it’s absolutely necessary.

Shopping or banking online

Look for the lock icon, HTTPS protocol or green highlighting in the address bar. While not foolproof, these are all signs a site is likely secure.

Find more information on how to prevent identity theft online

Want to know more about how to protect your privacy?

The Privacy Commissioner of Canada’s mission is to protect and promote your privacy rights.

Explore our website to find many practical tips and easy steps you can take to better protect your personal information, both online and offline. You can also contact us if you have a question or a privacy concern.

Provincial and territorial privacy oversight offices can also provide you with information about the laws they enforce.

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