Are you a Cyber fanatic? This article contains information on Cyber Wellness and Safety as well as tips to protect yourself from online risks.
Although it is evident that both terms play significant roles in shaping our online experiences, as an active social media user, daily activities that play out online have shown that a lot of individuals do not really understand these two concepts. In our increasingly interconnected world, where technology has permeated every aspect of our lives, the importance of maintaining a safe and healthy online environment cannot be overemphasized.
Two terms that are often used in this context are “Cyber wellness” and “Cyber safety .” While these terms may seem similar, they actually represent different things with different focus.
Cyber Wellness and Cyber Safety encompass various aspects of our digital lives, addressing different concerns and promoting different goals. In this article, we will delve into the differences between cyber wellness and cyber safety in terms of definition, objectives and scope. By understanding these differences, individuals can develop a more comprehensive understanding of the steps required to navigate the digital world responsibly.
There is a significant issue with cyber bullying, hacking, cyber-attacks, online fraud, and other issues in the realm of the internet and social media. Consequently, in order to be secure online, it is essential to understand the difference between cyber wellness and cyber safety.
Differences between Cyber Wellness and Cyber Safety
Before we go ahead to identify the differences, it is important to note that not all healthy individuals are safe from physical attacks and also not all individuals who are well protected from attacks are healthy.
Cyber wellness refers to the general well-being of individuals in the online space. It is a term used to describe the positive well-being of Internet users in general. It encompasses not only the physical safety of individuals online but also their mental, emotional, and social well-being. Cyber wellness emphasizes the importance of maintaining a healthy balance between online and offline activities, fostering positive digital habits, and promoting responsible online behavior. This involves understanding the social and emotional implications of online interactions, promoting respectful and effective communication instead of indulging in cyber bullying, and discerning reliable information from mere clouts.
On the other hand, Cyber safety, also known as online safety, primarily focuses on ensuring the security and protection of individuals in the digital space.
It therefore involves the measures and precautions taken to prevent and address online threats, such as cyber bullying, hacking, impersonation, and exposure to inappropriate content. Cyber safety aims to safeguard individuals from harm and maintain a secure online environment.
Practices that promote cyber safety include setting strong and unique passwords, activation of two factor authentication, regularly updating software and apps, using secure networks, avoiding clicking random links, and sharing personal information online cautiously.
The objectives of cyber wellness and cyber safety differ based on their respective definitions. Cyber wellness seeks to promote a positive and healthy online experience by fostering, critical thinking, ethical behavior and emotional intelligence. It aims to empower individuals to navigate the digital world confidently, make informed decisions, and maintain a balanced lifestyle that includes both online and offline activities.
On the other hand, the primary objective of cyber safety is to minimize risks and protect individuals from potential dangers in the digital space. It focuses on implementing measures to prevent cyber threats, educate individuals about potential risks, and encourage responsible online behavior to prevent harm.
Cyber wellness has a broader scope compared to cyber safety. It encompasses not only the protection from online threats but also the promotion of positive digital habits and well-being. Cyber wellness addresses issues such as digital literacy, online etiquette, emotional well-being, and the cultivation of healthy relationships in the digital world. It recognizes that individuals’ experiences online can have a significant impact on their overall well-being and emphasizes the importance of fostering positive digital experiences.
In contrast, cyber safety has a narrower focus primarily centered around protecting individuals from online risks. It includes measures such as installing security software, using strong passwords, safeguarding personal information, practicing safe browsing habits, and reporting any cyber threats or incidents. Cyber safety aims to reduce vulnerabilities and prevent potential harm in the digital space.
It is therefore safe to say that Cyber safety is a subset of Cyber wellness.
Tips for Cyber Wellness and Cyber Safety
Here are some tips for cyber wellness and cyber safety :
1. Protect Your Personal Information
A lot of internet users are carefree with sharing their personal details online.
This is the easiest way to get tracked and defrauded. Hence, Beware of emails, messages, or pop-ups requesting your personal information or login credentials.
For your safety online, be cautious about sharing personal information online, such as your full name, address, phone number, or financial details. Avoid posting sensitive information on public platforms or sharing it with unknown individuals.
2. Keep software up to date
Not a lot of people love to update apps for fear of getting a version the do not like it’s features. Personally, I find it difficult to update apps until I learnt why it’s necessary to do so. Regularly update your operating system, web browsers, and antivirus software to ensure you have the latest versions with comes with more secured softwares. This helps keep your devices secure.
3. Practice safe social media habits
Another tip to attain cyber wellness is to adjust your privacy settings on social media platforms to control who can view your posts and personal information. Be mindful of the content you share, as it can have long-term consequences.
4. Report and block suspicious activities
If you encounter cyber bullying , harassment, or any illegal online activities, report them to the relevant platform or authorities. Utilize blocking and privacy settings to protect yourself from unwanted interactions.
5. Build positive online relationships
Surround yourself with positive and supportive individuals in your online interactions. Engage with communities and groups that share your interests and values. Encourage respectful and constructive discussions while avoiding toxic or harmful online environments.
6. Practice Digital Emotional Intelligence
Be mindful of your online interactions and the impact your words and actions can have on others. Practice empathy, respect, and kindness in your digital communications. Before you do or say anything online, think of the outcome and how it will affect others.
In today’s digital age, understanding the differences between cyber wellness and cyber safety is important for navigating the online world responsibly. While both concepts addresses important aspects of our digital lives, they differ in their definitions, objectives, and scopes. Cyber wellness focuses on the overall well-being of individuals in the digital space, promoting positive digital habits and fostering a healthy balance between online and offline activities. On the other hand, cyber safety revolves around protecting individuals from online threats and ensuring their security in the digital space. By recognizing these differences, individuals can take proactive measures to safeguard their well-being while maintaining a secure online presence.
Being safe online, free from threats and cybercrimes, creates a conducive environment for one to develop a healthy digital lifestyle.
Ultimately, as technology advances and we become more exposed to the online space, the integration of both cyber wellness and cyber safety principles becomes essential.
 “Cyberwellness Tips.” North & West Area Scouts, https://www.scoutinglight.com/cyberwellness-tips.html.
 “Differentiating between Cyber Wellness and Cyber Safety.” Ajiraforum South Africa | Universities and Tvet Colleges Admissons | Grades Past Exam Papers and Memo, ajiraforum, 12 Apr. 2023, https://ajiraforum.com/south-africa/differentiating-between-cyber-wellness-and-cyber-safety/.