Of late, what has become excessively worrying for a lot of people is their security online. This is because now more than ever, the lives of many people including their finances, personal records, and a whole lot more are tied to their online environment. It becomes apparent to avoid getting hacked.
As a result of this, the worst thing that can happen to many people is for them to be hacked. It is not a good experience because it will automatically mean that someone else is in control of your entire online existence.
Here are some things that can happen when you are hacked
- Your identity could be stolen when you are hacked, and that will make you a victim of identity theft. With this, a criminal can carry out some nefarious activities using your profile including defrauding people.
- Your social media account can be accessed. Have you seen people whose social media pages have suddenly started sharing constant pornography or other forms of materials, such people may have had their accounts hacked. In other times, when your social media account is hacked, the hacker may use it to request for money from people you know.
- They can access your emails and tamper with documents that may be very useful. More so, through your email, one may be able to again defraud people by asking people you know for money.
- When you are hacked, your credit card information and other financial details could be stolen and transactions may be done online that would see you losing your money.
- Another thing is that hackers may decide to use your social media, email, or other things to share virus or other things when you have been hacked.
Useful Statistics you should know about hacking
- In every 39 seconds, a hacker is affecting someone in America.
- As much as 600,000 Facebook accounts are hacked every day according to the site’s security director.
- Every single day, 158,727 data are stolen per hour, 2,645 per minute and 44 every second.
- By 2021, cybercrime as a whole may cost as much as $6 trillion. At the same time, the spending on cybersecurity will reach $1 trillion.
- Cybersecurity jobs that are unfilled may be as high as 3.5 million by 2021 as a result of the seriousness of the sector.
- As much as 43 percent of cyber-attacks are targeting small business.
How to avoid getting hacked
1. Do not use a password more than once
One of the easiest ways that some people open themselves up to hacking and hackers is when they constantly reuse old passwords. The thing is that above everything else, your passwords are the most important protection you have on the internet so you need to be careful with them.
Reusing an old password can be as bad as using your date of birth or even your name1234, as they may be the first things a hacker will try. With already used passwords, a hacker may be able to pull them and use them.
One more thing with passwords is that using a mixture of numbers, letters, and special characters when allowed is the best thing you can do to yourself.
2. Don’t fail to Log out when you are done
I know it can be very inconveniencing when you have to always return to log in again into different sites, but it is a very safe thing to do as it may be able to keep you protected when your device gets into the wrong hands.
Also, you may be tempted you leave your Wi-Fi without security or even leave it on after you are done using it. That is also something that can open you up to be hacked easily.
3. Put in sensitive details in unsecured sites
This is another thing you should never do. Once a site does not have a proper security protection, you will need to avoid putting in your details including your passwords, credit card details, and other things.
With sites that do not have security protection, they are easy to access by hackers and your information can be stolen easily. Also, you will want to avoid sharing your data on a public network. Once it is a public network, you will do well by avoiding to access private data.
4. Don’t use outdated stuff
From your browser to antivirus and every other thing that needs to be updated, it is very important that you keep your software up to date. Applications are updated because of the bugs that have been discovered as well as other lapses that hackers may be able to sneak through. The moment the software is fixed, hackers always try to find newer holes and that is why the update is unending, and you need to keep it constantly going.
One example in the failure to update software for 2 months is what has caused the popular Equifax data breach that has allowed cybercriminals to access data of over 140 million Americans. As a result of the hacking, data such as names, addresses, birthdates, driver’s license, and even Social Security Numbers were exposed.
This was said to be one of the biggest data breach ever. Just updating software would have helped in preventing that breach.
5. Don’t shop anywhere that is not secure
There are two types of sites based on security; the secured and unsecured sites. No matter how much you need a particular product or service, once a site is not secure, do not purchase it or enter your credit card details. This is because anyone that can break in can easily see and copy your details.
How to know a site that is secure? Once you visit a particular site, just look at the address bar and if you see “https://” before www, the site is secure. If, however, what you see is “http://” or you don’t even see it, the site is not secure.
6. Don’t take your email for granted
A lot of things can go wrong when you lose your guard with your email. For example, you need to be careful with spams because 95% of email messages that are shared are essentially spam. What this means is that it is possible that you receive spam messages each day.
Most spam messages would give you a link to click and once you do that, your data will be compromised completely.
7. Don’t leave your devices without protection
Always lock your phones and use a password on your computers because you never can tell who and in what situation one may be able to have access to them. Leaving them without any protection will allow anyone to be able to not just see your data and activities, but also to compromise them in ways you may never know.
What to do when you are hacked
Big companies such as Yahoo and even security firms have been targeted and hacked by cybercriminals. What this means is that no one is immune and so the best thing we can all do is to be very careful. If, however, you still get attacked, here are things you need to do immediately:
- Change your password.
- Delete Any Sensitive Data from the Hacked Account
- Inform your contacts
- If it is a virus, you will need to shut down and take off your drive so as to prevent any damage
- Scan the drive and backup your important documents
- Clean the drive completely.
- Reinstall all the things you need and a good antivirus.
- Back up your data.