The recent past has seen a notable change in the way people go about their lives. Nowadays, almost everything is available online. Think of social conversations, business applications, and transactions; there are platforms that allow us to accomplish these and so much via the internet.

There’s no doubt this is more convenient. Human resources  departments can filter applicants with the aid of an online application process. You can accomplish a lot from the comfort of your home, as long as you have a computer and a good internet connection. So much convenience... but how safe are we? Does this convenience come at the expense of your data security?

With the recent increase in cyber-related crimes, the only way to ensure your online applications are safe is by remaining as vigilant as possible. Many institutions, especially in the finance sector, have invested heavily in measures that keep their online transactions safe and secure. The series of attacks forcing illegal access to important information has left them with no choice.

Despite the challenges in the use of the internet, we cannot do without it. Times have changed, and so should we. The good news is that we can still submit applications online, and in safety.

Put the following guidelines into practice for enhanced online applications security.

Safe Ways of Browsing the Internet

Every time you are on the internet, your personal and financial information is at risk. Password protection, remaining vigilant and using secure networks are effective ways of making sure your systems are safe against cybercrime. You can also use encryption technology - often known as SSL encryption - which can go a long way towards enhancing your overall security. There are also some password protected websites.

When it comes to carrying out monetary transactions online, many people are quite cautious. In many cases, it is the fear their important number,s such as social security figures and personal addresses, could be hacked or used to allow unauthorized access to personal profiles.

To ensure you are safe, always use secure browsing protocols. For instance, use HTTPS:// instead of HTTP://. Though its security cannot be 100% guaranteed, HTTPS offers secure browsing, which is one important step towards your data security. Free internet options such as Wi-Fi and public internet are also risky. While using them, it is advisable to always use a Virtual Private Network and only visit secure sites.

How to Make Secure Applications Online

Online applications for businesses and ordinary credit cards must be safe and secure. Whether you are making an application for internet marketing or content writing, your information should be safe. Many platforms provide credit lines that ensure high-end security at all times. Hackers should not be able to access your personal information. Whenever you are looking for affordable rates on business lines of credit, use the services of a reputable provider because they will use secure platforms.

Besides the mainstream options in the financial industry, a number of aggregation services exist. It is advisable to consider the safety of the process. You can do this by evaluating the information they give to clients. Look out for access to detail, and reliable customer support and care. You can look out for reviews at Trust Pilot to get information on the reliability of a given process, plus its authenticity.

In addition to this, make sure all your PCs, smartphones and other gadgets have updated security measures in place. Regularly updates the software and apps. In regard to financial security, make regular checks on your bank statements, loan status, credit card statements and so on. Report all changes, or transactions that you do not understand as soon as possible. By doing this, you will be protecting your personal security. Contrary to popular perception, anti-virus and anti-malware are not a luxury reserved for those in high-end business. It is a must-have for everyone who has a computer, a smartphone, laptop or other device that is used for internet access.

Guiding Principles of Ensuring the Security of Online Job Applications

Many companies ask for online applications, and expect those seeking employment to comply. To ensure safety on both ends, the following guidelines should be put in place:

  • Application databases should be limited. Let it be reserved for authorized staff only, and the software developer or system admin.

  • The online application process should ensure data collection and transfer is via a secure server that is TSL/SSL.

  • The application should only ask for details that are relevant to the job in question.

Adhering to the above principles is easier for the employer than it is for the applicant. In many cases, the software developer will highlight the associated benefits of their software.

So What Can Applicants Do?

  • They can verify online applications are safe by looking at the browser’s status bar. Secure pages have a green https before the URL or lock image. If you click on the lock image, you will see the security certificate and all the relevant information in regards to the security of that page. The authenticity of the certificate should have the owner's name, a date and signature.

Even if a page is secure, it will only ensure security of your information as it transits to the database server. From there, additional security needs to be installed to make sure the applicant’s data is safe.

To earn the trust of applicants, employers can inform them of the security measures they have put in place to keep their personal information safe and confidential. They can do so by introducing a brief statement at the end of an application. The statement assure applicants that the information they provide will only be accessible to authorized personnel like the system admin.

Ensuring Maximum Safety of Passwords and Information

Many people are enthusiastic about password security and protection. One should never share their password with anyone. Doing this automatically weakens your security chain. It is advisable to go for passwords that are hard to guess. Long passwords that have both numbers and alphabet characters are the best.

Go for passwords that are not common. Common passwords such as 123456 are easy to guess and/or hack. Security experts recommend the use of passwords that have both numerals and alphabet characters interchanging. Banks and financial institutions recommend safe storage of credit cards, pin numbers, bank cards, and smartphones.

It is advisable to use two-factor authentication, and security protocols which include the use of pin numbers. Two-factor authentication always sends SMS verification codes to your phone when there is an attempt to access your information from a new device. You can also choose to receive these codes via email.

Conclusion

Regardless of the measures put in place by an institution to protect your information, cyber-criminals and bullies will always be on the lookout for new tactics to access your confidential data. The only way you can assure maximum safety for all your online applications is by remaining vigilant. Use common sense. Invest in credible security measures, such as anti-virus and anti-malware software. Stay away from suspicious websites, and keep all your software up-to-date. While at it, make sure all these products are from credited sites. This way you will be safe from any after effects of non-secure browsing.

Have you faced security challenges while making an online application? Feel free to share your experiences by commenting in the comments section below. It will be great reading through them.

Oprettet 11 november, 2017

LucyKarinsky

Software Developer

Lucy is the Development & Programming Correspondent for Freelancer.com. She is currently based in Sydney.

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