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Amidst concerns of privacy and leaked personal information, it’s important now more than ever to make sure you are browsing the internet safely. Whether you’re simply looking for some internet safety best practices or seeking ways to keep client data secure, we have answers (along with some tips for our fellow SEOs!).
Discover how Google is making the world wide web a safer place and get some tips and tricks on how to stay safe out there.
In This Article:
Google Safe Browsing analyzes billions of URLs each day to flag any unsafe pages or legitimate sites that have been made vulnerable by malware.
Some Google Safe Browsing functions include:
When Google detects an unsafe or compromised site, it will display a warning on the Google Search page or in the web browser to alert users. Google sends warnings to over 5 million users daily.
Google Safe Browsing is effective on all Google products, including:
Even if your preferred browser isn’t Google, chances are you’re still receiving protection from Safe Browsing. Google distributes its list of compromised sites to a variety of other browsers, such as:
💡 Microsoft Edge uses its own safe browsing software, called Microsoft Defender SmartScreen. If you’re a fan of Microsoft products, rest assured that your online activities are being safeguarded.
Now you’re probably wondering, How do I know if Safe Browsing is working on my computer? Fortunately, Google makes it easy to detect if Safe Browsing is activated. You can also select your level of protection or turn off Safe Browsing with the following steps:
Google offers three levels of protection: no protection, standard protection, and enhanced protection. Learn more about each level of protection below.
(6 tips from digital marketers who use the internet all day, every day)
Whether you’re trying to avoid a computer virus or prevent client information from getting leaked, use these methods to ensure that you are browsing safely:
A VPN (virtual private network) hides your IP address while you’re online. As a result, your online activity and physical location cannot be tracked.
You can install a VPN on your desktop, laptop, iPhone, iPad, or Android devices.
Block or hide potentially viral popups with an ad blocker.
Ad blockers like AdBlock are over a decade old and block all forms of ads such as pop-ups, banners, and video ads.
Don’t give hackers a foothold with outdated software by keeping your browser and plug-ins up to date.
Find peace of mind with antivirus software. Best of all, there are a plethora of options for free antivirus software.
As a digital marketing company, we get it–keeping track of login information across all of your accounts gets complicated pretty fast. Use a password manager to keep all of your passwords in one place. This way, you don’t have to use the same password for each account and risk a password breach.
Seer uses LastPass to safely store the usernames and passwords for all the accounts and tools that our team uses on the daily.
While this tip doesn’t apply to viruses, it will protect your devices should they fall into the wrong hands. Don’t let unwanted users autofill your passwords or credit card information by disabling autofill capabilities across all your devices.
If you’re an SEO, you’re likely wondering what impact Google Safe browsing has on search. (Hint: the answer is a lot.)
💡 Google is more likely to rank a website that has a history of being safe and in good standing.
In fact, Safe Browsing is one of the five major signals of Google page experience:
Because website safety directly impacts its search ranking in Google — SEOs and website owners should make it a top priority.
You can implement keywords and metadata optimizations all you want, but if a page contains malware, Google will add your carefully optimized content to the Safe Browsing list of unsafe URLs.
Fortunately, Google makes it easy to check on the health of your website. With the Google Safe Browsing Transparency Report, you can examine a URL on your website and find out if it’s unsafe in a matter of seconds.
Webmasters can also use Google Search Console to view the Security Issues report, which identifies the following six security issues:
Included in the five signals of Google Page Experience is HTTPS, which is closely tied to safe browsing. Google has begun to rank HTTPS sites higher than HTTP. In 2014, Google even called for “HTTPS everywhere.”
💡 Learn more about the difference between HTTP vs HTTPs in this guide.
To add the “S” (which stands for “secure”) to your HTTP protocol, simply purchase an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate. HTTPS encryption guarantees that any data entered on your website is kept safe.
Adopting HTTPS protocol is an easy way to prevent user information from being compromised on your website (and in turn, protect your reputation).
If you’ve got safe browsing tips or advice for keeping your website secure, we want to hear them! Drop your top recommendations in the comments below or reach out on Twitter (@SeerInteractive).
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