These days, it’s essential to protect your personal information when browsing the web - but what’s the best way to do it? Cromwell’s Chief Information Officer, Dan Dickens, shares his top three tips for staying safe online.

I’d say there are three main considerations people need to keep in mind when thinking about protecting their personal information.

These are:

1. If organisations are asking you for personal information, you should immediately ask yourself ‘why?’ If you’re ordering from a liquor store online, for example, it may be that they need to verify that you’re purchasing legally. But, as a rule, I would encourage people to think very carefully; just be mindful about disclosing personal information like your birthdate or telephone number to a third party - you have no idea how securely that information is being stored.

2. Don’t click on links in emails, and don’t click on links sent in text messages to your phone - unless you know with certainty who has sent it. The vast majority of data breaches and cyber-attacks happen as a result of phishing campaigns. Phishing is when a scammer impersonates a company you know and attempts to steal your personal information - passwords, bank account details, etc. – by sending you a link to click on.

3. I would also recommend doing credit checks -using a service like Equifax - to keep a track of how your personal information is being used.