BBC News

Online and smartphone safety tips

By Del Crookes
Newsbeat reporter

image copyrightAP

A man who pleaded guilty to hacking into the email accounts of celebrities to gain access to nude photos and private information has been sentenced to 10 years in prison by a judge in Los Angeles.

Former office clerk Christopher Chaney, 36, hacked into the accounts of film star Scarlett Johansson and other celebrities.

He claimed he did it because he was addicted to spying on their personal lives.

Tips for staying safe online

  • Don't post personal information online, like your address, your email address or mobile number. Keep personal information as general as possible.
  • Never let anyone have access to your passwords. Check the privacy settings on accounts like Facebook/Twitter and make sure you know how to keep your personal information private.
  • Change passwords regularly.
  • Think very carefully before posting photos of yourself online. Once your picture is online, anyone can download it and share it or even change it.
  • Never respond or retaliate to negative posts.
  • Block any users that send you nasty messages on social media sites.
  • Never reveal your real name, your friends' names, where you go to school or your place of work.
  • Don't open emails, downloads or attachments from people you don't know or trust as they could contain a computer virus or unwanted messages.
  • Block spam emails and delete them.

Tips for staying safe on your phone

  • Try not to have your mobile or earphones on show, except when you're using it.
  • When you're chatting be aware of what and who is around you.
  • Even if you're in a group, stick to well-lit areas.
  • Use codes or passwords to lock your phone.
  • Download apps that can locate your phone and/or wipe data.
  • Turn off the ringer/enable vibrate.
  • Don't walk and text.
  • Record the phone's unique IMEI number.
  • Register your handset on the National Mobile Phone Register.


More on this story

  • Hundreds of mobile phones stolen each day, data shows