How to Stay Safe Online and Maximize Your Internet Connection

When the Internet first came out, you had to connect by dialing into the Internet through your landline phone. Many of you may still remember the distinctive static, clicks, and beeps that signaled it was connecting. Internet was a new and exciting luxury that opened up a whole new world of information and opportunities. Back then, we used the Internet so infrequently that it was OK to interrupt phone service to get online.

Fast-forward 25 years, and now the Internet is everywhere and in everything thing we do. There is technology all around us to keep us constantly entertained, informed, and connected. In fact, the average household has 7 Internet connected devices.  It really has become the “Internet of Things”. 

How to Stay Safe Online and Maximize Your Internet ConnectionImOn Communications knows that the right connections make all the difference!  Fast Internet helps you make connections by sending and receiving emails, binge watching your favorite shows, gaming to your heart’s content, working from home, checking up on family and friends through social media, automating your home, and so much more.

But this constant connection to the Internet can be overwhelming. As your local Internet provider, we have some tips to help you stay safe online and maximize your high speed Internet connection.

How to Stay Safe Online

First off, any internet-connected device, whether it’s a computer, tablet, cell phone, or smartwatch, is vulnerable to cyber-attacks. Cyber criminals lurk in the dark corners of the Internet waiting to steal your personal and private information, obtain your username and passwords, access your bank account or credit cards, and sabotage your personal computer. So, it is important to keep yourself, and especially your kids, safe while online. Here are a few things we can all do to defend against cyber attacks:

  • Update your virus software. Make sure all computers and mobile devices connected to the Internet have up-to-date protection. This includes anti-virus software, firewall security, and protection form Spyware and Malware.
  • Create strong passwords. Use a strong password that is at least 8-12 characters long and contains a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers, and symbols. Changing your passwords every 4-6 months is also strongly advised.
  • Secure your wireless network. While home wireless networks are very convenient, you need to ensure they are secure. If your Wi-Fi network is not secure, you open the door for hackers to steal your information or neighbors to hijack your Wi-Fi for their own personal use. Not only can this slow down your Internet speed, it also leaves you vulnerable to identity theft or illegal activity. Here are directions on how to lock down your Wi-Fi network.
  • Monitor what information your children share.  There are several tools and apps you can use to help keep track of what your kids are up to online.

How to Stay Safe Online How to Maximize Your High Speed Internet Connection

Now that you have your Wi-Fi network secured, there are several things you can do to help strengthen and expand your coverage area!

  • Put your wireless router in the center of your home. This will help to maximize your Wi-Fi coverage area. You should also avoid physical obstructions in your home like brick, metal, or stone, as these things can block your Wi-Fi signal.
  • Make sure items that use radio frequency are not between your device and your router. Most Wi-Fi routers use radio frequency, but other electronics in your home may use the same frequency. This will lead to some interference with your Wi-Fi signal and slower Internet speeds. These electronics could include cordless phones, garage door openers, baby monitors, and microwaves. Try to move these items away from your Wi-Fi router and make sure they are not located between your router and the device you are using.

How to stay safe online and maximize your Internet connectionDid you know?

ImOn believes in keeping you connected, no matter where you are at! That is why we provide FREE public Wi-Fi service in downtown Cedar Rapids, at the McGrath Amphitheatre, Hiawatha Parks, Newbo City Market, and the Cedar Rapids Ice Arena. To use the ImOn free public Wi-Fi, just look for “ImOn Free Wi-Fi” under your available Internet networks. You will then be directed to a webpage that will allow you to access the free network. So, no matter if you are at the park with the kids or meeting friends for a bite to eat, you can stay connected.

Free Wi-Fi in Cedar RapidsIf you would like to learn more about ImOn communications and what we have to offer, visit www.ImOn.net/Local. And for more helpful articles on Internet and cable TV topics, visit www.ImOnInsider.com.

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