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More ways to stay safe

If you've fallen victim to hi-tech fraud via a computer or a mobile device, there is very little you can do about it besides report it to your internet service provider or mobile operator, so it's ever more important to take sensible precautions when doing things online.

1 Set a strong password for any online or social media accounts you have and try to change it once a month or so. There are online tools that will generate strong yet memorable passwords.

2 Wherever possible, log in using secure settings, eg where the website URL will read https:// (the 's' stands for secure). This can be set up in Facebook in your account security settings.

3 Never share your email address, phone number or account numbers for services you use publicly. If you are using Twitter and a company asks for your details to assist you with a query, they should always provide you with a way of giving that information in a secure manner.

4 Install anti-virus software on your computer, iPad or smartphone to help protect you should you click on a link that then sends a virus to your hard drive.

5 Don't share personal information such as bank account information, your date of birth etc if you are not 100pc confident of the source of the request.

Irish Independent