Never take Internet security for granted, even if you have one of the most sophisticated online surveillance systems. The reason for that is that you never know when cyber criminals will be able to hack their way past your firewalls or gain access to the camera on your laptop. Never forget the basics of online security, and take steps to prevent strangers from monitoring you while you’re online.
Make a habit of running a complete virus and malware scan of your computer at least once a week. Even if your Internet browser has built in security, you should still run a full diagnostic of your entire computer just so you know for sure that you and your computer are completely safe.
You should also run an offline scan in case a virus has managed to install itself on the exception list for your anti-virus program.
Clean/Repair Install Your OS
There are ways that someone can monitor you without installing a program or virus on your computer. You can protect yourself with a repair install and a clean install if you think that someone might be monitoring your online activities. With a repair install you can reset your operating system, but you’ll preserve all of your programs and data. A clean install, on the other hand, will completely wipe everything off of your computer and you’ll start from square one.
If you really feel like someone is watching you through your computer’s webcam like their own personal CCTV system, you’ll want to perform a clean install. While it will wipe everything off of your computer, you can rest easy knowing for a fact that you aren’t being watched. Before you do a clean install, make sure you read a guide or two so that you do it right.
Secure and Reset Your Modem
Modems can easily be broken into, and sometimes they don’t even have to be hacked in order for someone to gain access to them. It’s best that you not only secure your wireless router, but that you also set a password on the web administrator page. Without setting up a password, you run the risk of someone plugging their computer into your router and altering your settings.
You can reset the router by looking for a reset button the back and holding it for ten to 15 seconds, which will get rid of all of the configured settings and reset your router back to its factory settings.
Use an Alternate Network
If someone actually is monitoring you through your computer, it’s most likely dependent on whatever network you’re using. Rather than using the wireless network at your house, you might want to think about switching to a tethered phone connection. While this isn’t a surefire way to keep from being monitored, it can most certainly prove useful in some situations.
Know that your wireless network and your computer network are the two main ways that someone can monitor you, which means that resetting both is one of the best ways to reassure yourself that no one is keeping an eye on your activities. While you can always put a piece of tape over your webcam, you never know what other monitoring programs might be on your computer without your knowledge.