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Top 10 Tips to Stay Safe on Discord

Make sure you don’t become one of them by using these ten valuable tips to stay safe on Discord. Top 10 Tips to Stay Safe on Discord.

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Top 10 Tips to Stay Safe on Discord

As with any platform with a large user base nowadays, Discord has attracted its fair share of unsavory individuals. Spambots, cyber attackers, trolls, and others now roam the platform searching for their next victims. Make sure you don’t become one of them by using these ten valuable tips to stay safe on Discord.

1. Watch Out for Spam Links

Spotting scams on Discord has never been easier, as the app always asks whether you’re sure about visiting links on domains you haven’t marked as trusted. Don’t blindly click “Yep!” on just any connection, as that “image” could very well be a phishing domain or malware in disguise. Watch out for “.exe” extensions at the end of links, as that’s a sure sign you’re dealing with a malicious program.

2. Use a VPN

Most online chat programs are plagued by so-called “IP grabbers” – scripts and links that broadcast your IP address to a malicious third party. Unfortunately, Discord is no different in that regard. Now, if you weren’t aware, your IP address reveals sensitive details about your location, including your country, city, and even ZIP code.

You can probably guess that’s not a pleasant experience. If you already feel unsafe online, having some random creeper find out your physical location can only aggravate the feeling. Fortunately, VPNs mask your actual IP and replace it with a new one based on which server you use – keeping your exact location a secret.

Moreover, it will encrypt your network traffic (garble it, basically) to keep you safe from eavesdropping and other cyber attacks. All in all, VPNs are excellent security tools – especially for use on insecure networks, like your local coffee shop’s free Wi-Fi.

3. Check Your Discord Privacy Settings

Discord already has its built-in security settings, so take advantage of those. One of those settings is “Safe Direct Messaging,” which scans your DMs for explicit content and blocks any content deemed unsafe. To find the option, head over to the Settings page and click on “Privacy & Safety.”

We recommend activating the “Keep me safe” setting. Why not the “My friends are nice” option, you ask? Well, you never know when one of them ends up with a compromised account. Let them know about this article, so they never do!

4. Choose Your Friends Wisely

Speaking of which, carefully consider who you add on Discord. Making new friends is cool and all, but unsolicited requests from randos on the Internet aren’t. Fortunately, you can prevent strangers from adding you by toggling off all the switches under “Who can add you as a friend” in your privacy settings. Leave the “Friends of Friends” option on if you trust your buddies’ choice of friends. It’s as easy as that.

5. Turn Off Messages from Strangers

Consider disabling the “Allow direct messages from server members” setting as well, especially if you don’t know everyone in the servers you hang around. Disabling messages from server members will also prevent rogue bots from spamming you with malicious links.

If someone needs to message you in private, you can always add them as friends (provided you trust them).

Turn Off Messages from Strangers

6. Make Good Use of That Block Button

Somebody being an annoyance or making you feel unsafe on a public Discord? Click their username and then “Block” to prevent them from DM-ing you and hide their messages. Mobile users need to hold tap their username and then tap on the three dots to the right of the screen to access the “Block” button.

It’s not the best block function out there since you still see irritating “x blocked messages” notifications on public chats. Unfortunately, despite literally thousands of threads on the topic, Discord has yet to implement a way to hide those notifications.

7. Never Share Personal Info Publicly

Unless you know a person on Discord in real life, try not to reveal any personal details about yourself, such as:

  • Your real name
  • Your real-life address
  • Emails and phone numbers
  • Social media accounts (don’t connect your Steam, Twitter, Twitch, and other socials that might contain info others could use to identify you)

Sure, the main point to socializing is getting to know the people you talk with. However, that’s also a surefire way to get “doxxed” nowadays, especially if you share your private info on a public server.

8. Use a Throwaway Email for Your Account

If your Discord account somehow gets compromised, you don’t want the cyber attacker to access your primary email. They can use it to send you spam and further phishing emails, leading to some significant damage. ProtonMail and Tutanota are a couple of decent, free encrypted email providers you can use to create a Discord account.

Keep the following in mind, though. Even if you use a throwaway email and hackers can’t get much out of it, they still have all your chat history at their fingertips. If you’ve unknowingly shared any personal info anywhere, cybercriminals and bullies could use it to their advantage.

9. Create a Strong Password

Ideally, you don’t want hackers to get a hold of your account at all. Aside from staying vigilant against phishing scams, you’ll want to use a strong password on Discord. Alternate uppercase and lowercase letters and use a lot of memorable characters (e.g., %, ! #, @, ^) to make it harder to crack.

10. Use Two-Factor Authentication

Discord supports a wide variety of two-factor authentication methods (or 2FA, for short):

  • Google Authenticator
  • Author
  • QR scanning using either of the methods above

This joins an extra layer of security in case someone gets ahold of your login details. Even basic SMS authentication is better than nothing. Preferably you’d only use it as a backup method if you lost access to your authenticator app or didn’t download your backup codes as instructed.

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Computer Network

How Zero Trust Networks Operate

But how do zero-trust networks operate, and what exactly makes them more effective than other types of security?

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Network Bandwidth

Zero-trust network access (ZTNA) is a way of limiting who is allowed to access enterprise networks. As the name implies, ZTNA doesn’t make any assumptions about unknown endpoints, users, or applications other than that they might be untrustworthy. To combat the ongoing risks associated with allowing dangerous actors or applications to exploit network vulnerabilities, ZTNA draws a hard line in the sand and requires proof of authentication and authorization.

It’s worth noting that ZTNA works by only affording information that must be known, and only that much. While this might seem restrictive, it’s not overly cumbersome when you consider the problems resulting from a data breach. In essence, ZTNA reimagines what it means to secure networks. Instead of creating a perimeter of security—a concept popularized by firewalls and other similar technologies—ZTNA instead focuses on building trust on the individual access level.

There are a few reasons why the traditional ways of securing networks, while still valuable, aren’t sufficient for in-depth protection in today’s world. A big part of the issue is that more and more operations are moving to the cloud and remote locations. As networks have to expand to meet this demand, older forms of perimeter protection can’t keep up. But how do zero-trust networks operate, and what exactly makes them more effective than other types of security?

1. What Are the Key Features of Zero-Trust Network Access?

When thinking about ZTNA, it’s helpful to conceptualize it as part of the DNA of your network. Implementing a ZTNA means that every aspect of how your network security functions must follow its protocols. By creating this kind of zero-trust network access, organizations can do a much more thorough job of controlling who’s allowed to access corporate data. These are a few of the key features that are essential to ZTNA:

Comprehensive, Secure Connection – No matter where legitimate users are located, they need to access enterprise networks safely. Good ZTNA creates an ecosystem where all connected users and applications can confidently connect without worry.

Computer Network Expert with Microsoft

Integration with Cloud Platforms and Applications – Your networks aren’t just your own in today’s world. The vast majority of organizations utilize public and hybrid cloud models and use large suites of third-party apps. Integrating internal ZTNA policies with these essential network technologies will help keep your enterprise safer in this ever-changing landscape.

Keep Them Separated – An actual zero-trust architecture doesn’t compromise when segregating potential threat vectors and authentication tools. Keeping each piece independent facilitates a complete zero-trust environment.

Get Experts on Your Team – No matter the skill of your internal IT department, having the expertise of ZTNA experts from a security service provider will create whole new levels of safety.

Don’t Compromise on Reaching Users and Devices – It needs to be comprehensive for ZTNA to be fully effective. This means every user and device connecting to enterprise networks must pass muster.

2. How Do Technologies Integrate Zero-Trust Network Access?

Certain technologies integrate ZTNA into larger, overarching tools. Secure access service edge (SASE) is one example of this. With SASE, you’re getting a combination of a software-defined wide-area network (SD-WAN) with a lineup of cutting-edge security tools.

The best SASE offerings out there today will typically have an option for enterprises to enact ZTNA protocols on their networks. Having ZTNA come as part of a more extensive offering can help drive cost savings and foster a more airtight and seamless security architecture.

The world of cybersecurity is constantly changing. It’s the job of enterprises to keep up with this, or else risk the loss of critical data. Adopting zero-trust network access policies can help organizations keep threats at bay.

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