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Thankfully, the celebrity photo leaks of the past few months seem to have passed. This event Apple Investigates Celebrity Nudes, YouTube Introduces Tip Jar, And More... [Tech News Digest] Apple Investigates Celebrity Nudes, YouTube Introduces Tip Jar, And More... [Tech News Digest] Also, looking forward to the Internet Slowdown, Windows XP edges 1% closer to death, play Star Citizen for free, the new Raspberry Pi Web browser, and the wearables we narrowly avoided. Read More — referred to as The Fappening, Celebgate, and a variety of other names — saw some 500 indecent photos of celebrities, including Jennifer Lawrence, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and Kaley Cuoco, leaked to the public online.

This form of invasion could have happened to anybody, and it probably has at some point — you just don’t hear it reported when only a few commoners are affected. Hopefully you’ll never have to experience such an embarrassing event; if you follow these tips, you won’t.

Watch What You Save In The First Place

There’s been a lot of debate about this, and the intention here is not to blame victims. However, it’s important to remember that if there are no nude pictures (or any other sorts of incriminating files) on your phone in the first place, they can’t be stolen by others. Even with a secure messaging app 6 Secure iOS Messaging Apps That Take Privacy Very Seriously 6 Secure iOS Messaging Apps That Take Privacy Very Seriously Don't fancy your messages being read by unwanted parties? Get a secure messaging app and worry no more. Read More , you have no guarantee of protection. When using Snapchat, the disposable picture messenger Send Self-Destructing Risqué Photos & Videos With Snapchat [iOS & Android] Send Self-Destructing Risqué Photos & Videos With Snapchat [iOS & Android] So you want to text someone a private flirty or goofy photo or video of yourself, but you know that images and videos can be shared and circulated on the Internet very quickly. Well it... Read More , for example, all the recipient of an illicit photo has to do is take a screenshot The Ultimate Guide on How to Take a Screenshot The Ultimate Guide on How to Take a Screenshot Most people would think taking a screenshot was a simple and straightforward process, and that it would be much the same on every platform they encounter. Well, they'd be wrong. The process of taking screenshots... Read More ; then who knows where it will spread?

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To that end, be careful what’s on your devices. If you must keep anything potentially embarrassing, be sure to encrypt them on your phone How To Encrypt Data on Your Smartphone How To Encrypt Data on Your Smartphone With the Prism-Verizon scandal, what allegedly has been happening is that the United States of America's National Security Agency (NSA) has been data mining. That is, they have been going through the call records of... Read More ; Chris has given four reasons why encryption is a good idea Not Just For Paranoids: 4 Reasons To Encrypt Your Digital Life Not Just For Paranoids: 4 Reasons To Encrypt Your Digital Life Encryption isn’t only for paranoid conspiracy theorists, nor is it just for tech geeks. Encryption is something every computer user can benefit from. Tech websites write about how you can encrypt your digital life, but... Read More should you need more convincing.

Keep Strong Passwords And Tight Access

Initially, iCloud was blamed for the photo leaks, but it was later decided that the attack was targeted on usernames, passwords, and security questions How To Create A Security Question That No One Else Can Guess How To Create A Security Question That No One Else Can Guess In recent weeks I have written a lot about how to make online accounts recoverable. A typical security option is setting up a security question. While this potentially provides a quick and easy way to... Read More . This tells us that the service where the pictures were stored was not to blame, but that the perpetrator was likely able to break into accounts. Therefore, it’s important to make your passwords as air-tight as possible.

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If you need some advice on bulking up your passwords, we’ve compared methods of managing passwords 5 Password Management Tools Compared: Find the One That's Perfect for You 5 Password Management Tools Compared: Find the One That's Perfect for You Choosing some sort of password management strategy to deal with the huge amount of passwords we need is crucial. If you're like most people, you probably store your passwords in your brain. To remember them... Read More ; LastPass is an awesome tool to simplify the password process, or if you prefer the old-fashioned way be sure to follow tips to create a memorable yet strong password 6 Tips For Creating An Unbreakable Password That You Can Remember 6 Tips For Creating An Unbreakable Password That You Can Remember If your passwords are not unique and unbreakable, you might as well open the front door and invite the robbers in for lunch. Read More .

While we’re on the subject of passwords, it’s important to make sure that you keep them to yourself. If you wouldn’t trust someone with your credit card number, don’t share passwords with them. Obviously your spouse is a special case, but those should be rare.

If you’ve passed around this personal information before, do yourself a favor and change your passwords. You don’t need to be hyper-sensitive and change them once a week or anything, but it’s a good idea if you’ve been lax in the past.

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Take Advantage Of Two-Factor Authentication

Two-factor authentication What Is Two-Factor Authentication, And Why You Should Use It What Is Two-Factor Authentication, And Why You Should Use It Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a security method that requires two different ways of proving your identity. It is commonly used in everyday life. For example paying with a credit card not only requires the card,... Read More adds an additional layer of security to any account that supports it. In addition to your password (something you know), to gain access to your account someone must have a code from your phone (something you have). It isn’t 100% bulletproof, and it might seem inconvenient at first, but the added security it brings is well worth any small hassle. Should a person with malicious intent crack your password, they’ll still be locked out without a code.

We’ve written about the most critical services to enable two-factor authentication Lock Down These Services Now With Two-Factor Authentication Lock Down These Services Now With Two-Factor Authentication Two-factor authentication is the smart way to protect your online accounts. Let's take a look at few of the services you can lock-down with better security. Read More on, and recommend using Authy as your primary Can Two-Step Verification Be Less Irritating? Four Secret Hacks Guaranteed to Improve Security Can Two-Step Verification Be Less Irritating? Four Secret Hacks Guaranteed to Improve Security Do you want bullet-proof account security? I highly suggest enabling what's called "two-factor" authentication. Read More code-generating app. Finally, if you’re interested, TwoFactorAuth.org lists the full details of two-factor compatibility for hundreds of websites; your bank or favorite retail sites might offer it too!

Stay In Charge Of Your Accounts

It’s no secret that Facebook changes up their workings Facebook Changes Your News Feed, Apple Protects Your Privacy, And More... [Tech News Digest] Facebook Changes Your News Feed, Apple Protects Your Privacy, And More... [Tech News Digest] Also, Twitpic lives, Amazon buys .Buy, BlackBerry mimics Porsche, Aubrey Plaza is Grumpy Cat, and the iPhone 6 drops. Read More often, and this unfortunately includes privacy settings. Because of this, you need to stay vigilant and check what you’re sharing regularly; Facebook’s newer privacy menu Make Sure You're Secure With Facebook's New Privacy Settings - A Complete Guide Make Sure You're Secure With Facebook's New Privacy Settings - A Complete Guide Facebook also means two other things: frequent changes and privacy concerns. If there’s one thing we’ve learned about Facebook, is that they’re not really concerned about what we like or our privacy. Nor should they... Read More helps, but it too could change. Have you added any third-party apps? If so, head to your allowed apps in Facebook and make sure that the list is safe and current. Any entries you haven’t used in a while or even have never heard of before should be chucked.

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The more information about yourself and pictures you share with the public, the greater the chance that your security will be breached. There’s nothing wrong with sharing on Facebook or other social media; just be sure to know your audience. Go over your friends list once a month to be sure you haven’t accepted requests Facebook Friend Requests: Unwritten Rules & Hidden Settings [Weekly Facebook Tips] Facebook Friend Requests: Unwritten Rules & Hidden Settings [Weekly Facebook Tips] Facebook is all about connecting with other people and making friends. Yet friend requests are delicate and can quickly get you in trouble with Facebook. While you probably won't get banned for inappropriate friend requests,... Read More from anyone weird or someone you don’t know well. A good test of your current privacy state is found on your Timeline: click the three dots menu to the right of View Activity Log and choose View As… to see what your page looks like to the public.

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Another good idea is to Google yourself The Google Yourself Challenge [INFOGRAPHIC] The Google Yourself Challenge [INFOGRAPHIC] They call it "ego surfing" - when you sit down in front of the computer, go to Google (or whatever search engine you prefer), and find out what information there is about you online. I... Read More occasionally. Knowing the first few results that come up when someone is looking for you helps you estimate how much of your personal details are immediately accessible. If you find anything that you don’t want out there, identify the site it’s found on and fix it as soon as you can.

Let’s take an example of a real hack to illustrate another point. Scarlett Johannson was a victim a few years ago, and her hacker had used the Forgot Password function along with readily accessible Internet information to get into her account. While he was in, he set up forwarding to send every message from her inbox to an email address he could monitor. This let him continue to read her messages even if she had changed her password.

The lesson here is to keep an eye on your outgoing messages on all sites. You’re surely seen a social media scam 5 Ways To Spot Social Media Scams & Rogue Apps 5 Ways To Spot Social Media Scams & Rogue Apps Facebook is a huge platform for all sorts of scams. Cleaning up after falling for one is a pain; let's take a look at some ways to identify and avoid them. Read More where a friend’s account is compromised and sends you a link to some junk website or worse. Often, people have no idea that this happened until their friends tell them, and someone who isn’t tech-savvy may have already fallen for it. Be diligent and be sure there’s no one using your account silently.

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You != Jennifer Lawrence

With these tips, you’re much less likely to become a victim of privacy invasion. Since you’re likely not a person who’s well-known like these women, there’s less of a risk, but know that you are still a target regardless.

Now that you’ve secured yourself, sit back and enjoy the more lighthearted take: the funniest tweets about the celebrity nudes leak Titillating Tweets: The 18 Funniest Reactions To The Celebrity Nudes Leak [Weird & Wonderful Web] Titillating Tweets: The 18 Funniest Reactions To The Celebrity Nudes Leak [Weird & Wonderful Web] Opinions on this saga have varied. We are not here to preach, so, presented without judgment on their suitability, here are some of the funniest tweets that appeared on Twitter in the aftermath. Read More .

What other methods keep you safe from being hacked? Do you have any victim stories? Leave a comment!

Image Credits: Burglar Via Shutterstock, Index finger Via Shutterstock, Mouse and Key via morgueFile; xkcd Passwords via xkcd; PIN Hand via Shutterstock

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