Cyber threats seem to be unrelenting and more and more dangerous every single day. While the internet connects us all and presents us with a wealth of information and services it is not without risk. Cyber attacks are constantly evolving and many criminals now use a combination of attacks to accomplish a single goal. We have touched on cyber attacks in other articles but here are a few more you should be aware of and a tip or two to help keep you safe online.
Social Media & Your Digital Footprint = Sharing is not caring
The things you share on your social profiles can be used by an attacker to steal your identity, hack into your accounts, or defraud you. Be careful what you share, where you share it, and with whom you are sharing it with. What do I mean – here are a couple of examples: Posting that you are leaving for vacation simply tells everyone that you are not home as well as how long you will be gone and how far away you will be. Posting about your children’s schools or after-school events and their schedules gives criminals a clear picture of who they are, what they look like, and where your family will be at certain times of the day. Get the point?
Social Engineering = Your outrage makes you easy to manipulate
Bad guys WILL use your own emotions and fears to control and manipulate you. Don’t fall for it. Click bait is called BAIT for a reason.
Mobile Devices = Easy to steal
Protect the information stored in your phone! Never leave your phone out where someone can grab it. Make sure you lock your phone… and don’t use easy to guess PINs such as 1234 or 0000.
Botnet malware is a network of computers that have been compromised or hijacked. They give hackers the ability to control the infected devices remotely for a variety of reasons. They can steal your data, log your keystrokes, or use the machine for other illegal ends (such as sending SPAM or mining illicit crypto currency). They can also use these botnets to overload servers to knock websites offline. Your computer can become part of a botnet simply by being infected with the hacker’s virus.
The Dark Web
Yeah, it is real… and what it contains is downright scary. You’ll find everything from illegal drugs and gun sales, to illicit pornography, to stolen credit card and Social Security numbers, bank account numbers, and a lot more. The dark web is a part of the internet that is made up of hidden sites that cannot be accessed through conventional web browsers, such as you and I use daily. The sites on the dark web also use encryption to hide their visitor’s and owner’s information. Don’t let your personal information end up for sale on the Dark Web.
Passwords and 2FA = Better protection
Only use secure passwords that are easy for you to remember but hard for a hacker to guess or crack. Adding 2-factor authentication protects you even more… or use an app for even stronger protections.
How quickly can your password be cracked?
Here are the most recent numbers on how quickly a hacker can crack a password based on the composition of the password:
|Number of Characters||Numbers Only (i.e. 12298)||Lowercase Letters Only (i.e. ddopsy)||Uppercase + Lowercase Letters (i.e. GreDsy)||Numbers + Uppercase + Lowercase Letters (i.e. A4ggY7)||Symbol + Numbers + Uppercase + Lowercase Letters (i.e. Jy4#ff@L)|
|6||INSTANTLY||INSTANTLY||INSTANTLY||1 Second||5 Seconds|
|7||INSTANTLY||INSTANTLY||25 Seconds||1 Minute||6 Minutes|
|8||INSTANTLY||5 Seconds||22 Minutes||1 Hour||9 Hours|
|9||INSTANTLY||2 Minutes||19 Hours||3 Days||3 Weeks|
|10||INSTANTLY||58 Minutes||1 Month||7 Months||5 Years|
|11||2 Seconds||1 Day||5 Years||41 Years||400 Years|
|12||45 Seconds||3 Weeks||300 Years||2K Years||34K Years|
|13||4 Minutes||1 Year||16K Years||100K Years||2M Years|
|14||41 Minutes||51 Years||800K Years||9M Years||200M Years|
|15||6 Hours||1K Years||43M Years||600M Years||15BN Years|
|16||2 Days||34K Years||2BN Years||37BN Years||1TN Years|
|17||4 Weeks||800K Years||100BN Years||2TN Years||93TN Years|
|18||9 Months||23M Years||6TN Years||100TN Years||7QD Years|
Need a hand or hand questions? Contact TeCHS!