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By NEXT Academy
You probably have heard the news about people getting hacked.
News about how people lost their entire savings in their bank, news about how their laptops get hacked and they need to pay ransom to unlock their laptop, news about how their personal social media account is being hacked.
This could happen to everyone, including you.
It’s time to know what you can do to prevent this from happening to you!
According to Safety Detectives, our home networks and businesses are ill-prepared for a cyberattack!
4.1 Billion Records Of Data Breaches In First Half Of 2019
Verifications.Io → 763 Million UsersCanva → 137 Million Users
34% Of Data Breaches Involved Internal Actors
Malware disguised as harmless .doc, .dot, .exeToday most popular, malwares are being disguised as Word doc files because people do not suspect “.doc” filesChecking file type is important. From the onset, it might look like a PDF file, e.g. “invoice.pdf”, but when you check file type, it is in fact a “invoice.pdf.exe” file.
$6 Trillion Annual Cybersecurity Damage By 2021 (Cybersecurity Ventures)
Ransomware Damage Costs Rise To $11.5 Billion In 2019,A Victim Every 14 Seconds (Cybersecurity Ventures)
65% Of Groups Used Spear-Phishing As The Primary Infection Vector (Symantec)
IoT Devices Experience An Average Of 5,200 Attacks Per Month (Symantec)
90% Of Remote Code Execution AttacksAre Associated With Crypto-Mining (CSO Online)
Here are our everyday items that can be hacked. It could be due to technological oversight or human error or negligence which gave hackers a chance to attack you.
Look at which of these you own and read more on how you can get hacked!
Imagine trying to log into your computer one day and you can’t access your files. A red screen appears and said “Ops! Your files have been encrypted. Send 2 Bitcoins within 24 hours before we delete ALL your files.”You would need to pay them USD14,000 (by Dec 2019 price) to get your files back, in fact, there is no guarantee that you can get it back!Globally, there are 204 million ransomware attacks in 2018 alone.
Back to What Do You Have That Can Be Hacked?
There are generally a few ways hackers could cause harm to you via your computer :
One fine day, your computer is doing things it shouldn’t be doing: accessing files it shouldn’t be accessing without you touching your keyboard or mouse. Is there a ghost?! Or, someone is controlling your computer remotely.Not just that! The hacker could also stay behind the scene silently, record what is on your screen and also record what you are typing. With this, your passwords and security information can easily be exposed.
You noticed that your computer is performing slower, lags in execution and crashes quite a bit.Hmm… maybe the computer is old or out-dated? Or is it? You could have been cryptojacked and hackers are using your computer processing power to mine cryptocurrencies behind the scenes without you knowing it.
You are in a mall and decided to do some work over the public wifi network. You noticed at times the network seemed to have problems. But it is still ok. You continue browsing some websites, logged in to check out some stuff.The sites you are browsing are HTTP (insecure) websites instead of HTTPS (secure) websites. Read more on What is Websites, Web Apps & Mobile AppsDays later, you found out that someone has been trying their luck to access your Instagram account! What is happening here?
There are generally 2 ways of using your social media account:• Hacking your actual account• Creating a FAKE account that looks like you
Your friends contacted you that your social media account, say Facebook, has been doing unscrupulous things.Before you wonder what you can do about it… let’s talk about how we can prevent this from happening.
Friends and family have been asking you, why do you have a separate social media account.Aside from that, another friend informed you that there is a profile with a different name that has your pictures on it.
There are multiple ways to go about hacking your bank account, their goal is to phish for your username and password:
You received an email from your bank asking you to login. In the email was an unsuspecting button which was supposed to link you to the bank’s website. You clicked on it, key-in your username and password.In less than 5 minutes, you got an SMS alert saying that you have successfully transferred out $2000 to another person. You got shocked and you tried to stop it. In the end, you became $2000 poorer and you can’t do much about it.
You received a call from a lady. She said she’s from the bank and “there was an attempt to use your card in Miami, Florida. Was this you?” You said no.She mentioned that she will use the pin to block the card and that you will receive an SMS. You received the SMS and gave her the pin. The call went on and she asked you for more confidential details.The next day, you realise that all your money is gone.
There are multiple ways to go about hacking your credit or debit cards.Here are the 2 most common ways:
You went to an ATM to get some cash out with your debit card. After happily getting $50 you went off for your shopping. Later you came back to get extra cash but realised that you have lost $1000.
You got a credit card, you happily post a picture of it on social media.
People these days use their laptops and phones in bedrooms, toilets, office and much more. I am sure our laptops have “seen” a lot of things. But are you certain that there are no hackers looking at you through your webcam?
There was a huge data breach and you are affected. Luckily, you have 2FA enabled. You should be safe right? Suddenly you couldn’t use your phone number. After you recover your number, you got alerted that $50,000 was transferred. You realised that many of your account’s passwords have been changed too.What happened?
Imagine someone controlling your CCTV or your Amazon Echo to spy on you and disrupt your life. The things that are meant to give you convenience or protect you are used against you.
Just like fishermen, they throw their nets far and wide to catch whatever fish that falls into its trap.They pose as your bank to send out urgent emails and innocent victims would click into the fake link to log into the bank. These phishers would then use this information to log into the real bank account.Read Your bank account
Go to Type of Hackers
Spear-phishers are similar to fishermen who use spears to hunt specific fish.
These hackers will identity a target, likely a weak target that has access to the company they want to penetrate. They look for all the information they can find online on this person (e.g. your social media accounts) and start to befriend the victim. The victim would then let their guard down.
The “new friend” would phish for information and could also send malware over to the victim. Once the victim fall into this trap, the spear-phisher would then access the company’s system and/ or spread malware to all the victim’s colleague.
The people want money and they want to extort you. One way is through ransomware. It will lock down your files and folders. They will only give you back access when you pay them bitcoin.
Another way, is that they get access to your information via webcam, CCTV or files in your computer and blackmail you.
Read Your files & folders in your computerRead Your webcam & mobile phone camera
The goal is to break into your computer system and take control of it. It could also get information from you.
Malware is most commonly used to do this, be it to remotely control your computer or to use keylogger to get everything you are typing via your keyboard.
Read Your computer/ laptop
We watch a lot of 007 James Bond movies. Now just imagine going up against James Bond.
These hackers breaking into your system to get sensitive or confidential information. Can you imagine how often big companies need to fight against hackers?
What’s better than cash? Untraceable money (well, almost).Setting crypto miners is expensive and time consuming. Why not just write some code so that anyone who executes the code unknowingly would offer up their computer processing power to help the cryptojackers mine.Read Your computer’s processing power
These hackers love to pose as other people and steal identities. Be it by hacking into your real account or duplicate another account that looks like you.They would pose as you to do unscrupulous things without you knowing.Read Social media account
These hackers love to spread their malicious software (malware) to extort money, cripple systems or to steal information.Read Your files & foldersRead Your computer/ laptop
He is the hidden hand in the middle. You don’t know that he was there but he’s looking and recording everything you send or receive through the internet.Read Wireless network
He is quite a genius, but not for good.He tinkers with hardware to skim credit cards or to leverage on your devices vulnerabilities and to use it against you!Read Your credit & debit cardRead Your home devices
These are smart people prying on victim’s stupidity or naivety. For example, some victims posted all their credit card information online! Nuff said.
Read Your credit & debit card
Some people are just obsessed. They love to spy and peep but they have no guts to do it publicly.What they do if hack into your webcams and CCTV, what’s better than to watch a free show?Read Your webcam/ mobile phone cameraRead Your home devices
These guys know that our mobile phones are our lifeline. It’s not just to make calls and send messages, we use it to get our secure pin for our banks and payments.The swappers would swap your mobile identity to intercept all important pin messages and log into all your accounts.
Sometimes, we might not be able to prevent hacking completely. But, there are definitely some preventive steps that you can take to protect yourself from hackers. Here are some ways to prevent you not being hacked:
Be wary of scams
Password for your email should be different from the rest(eg. Gmail password should be different from Facebook, Instagram, etc.)
Use strong password
Cover webcams when not in use
Keep your devices locked when not in use
Use two factor if available
Be aware of informations that you post on social media
Pay attention to URL of the sites that you’re visitingIf you have a business website, read on how to secure your business website
Do not share your login details with others
Read permissions before granting
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