How to Prevent Hackers from Stealing Your Information

15th Nov 2019

A laptop slightly closed with the screen light shining in the dark | ViaScreens

On average, hackers attack every 39 seconds, and with it becoming increasingly common, you must protect your data. For example, in November 2017, Uber (the global transportation company) announced that the data of their 57 million users and drivers were compromised, including names, phone numbers, and email addresses, as well as seven million driving licences of Uber drivers. In this blog, we take a look at how you can protect your information from hackers.

What You Are Doing to Help Hackers Steal Your Information

  • Having one password for multiple accounts
  • Using one email address for multiple accounts
  • Surfing the web on a public Wi-Fi
  • Browsing dangerous websites
  • Downloading suspicious email attachments
  • Filling out debit or credit card information on unsafe websites
  • Shopping on unsecured websites
  • Downloading free software and clicking unsafe links
  • Not updating your system software
  • If you decide not to encrypt your data
  • Sharing too much information on social media platforms

Why Do Hackers Steal Information?

Hackers steal information because it is their job to, and they can make money from selling the data to the dark web or brokers. Furthermore, a lot of hackers enjoy and thrive off of the attention they receive, and they get a kick out of spying on people and businesses. Some hackers are merely curious and want to practice the skills they have learnt.

A hacker sat at a desk on a laptop in a dark room. | ViaScreens

How to Prevent Hackers from Gaining Your information?

There are many steps you can take in order to prevent hackers from gaining access to your information.

Email Security

We all use emails, whether it is for business or personal use. Unfortunately, emails are an easy route for hackers to use to gain information; therefore, steps should be taken to prevent this. First of all, you want to encrypt your email; it works by jumbling up your emails, and only you can authorise someone to gain access. Additionally, you should use a strong password and also use one that is different from your other accounts; that way, it is less likely that a hacker can steal your information.

Password Security

You must use strong and complex passwords to give yourself the best chance of keeping your data safe and secure. We understand that remembering passwords can be tricky, but it is essential that you avoid using birthdays and names. These are easy to crack, especially if this information is shared on your social media. Furthermore, as mentioned previously, you should avoid using the same password across multiple accounts. By doing this, you are making the hackers’ job very simple, and once they have access to one account, they can access all of them.

Security Questions

Often when setting up an account, you will be asked to answer some security questions. Nine times out of 10, you will get to choose the questions you answer, and this is where you want to select the trickier ones. Easy questions to crack consist of “where were you born?” or “what is your mothers maiden name?”; this information could be found on social media. Try using questions such as “what is your favourite movie?” or “where did you first meet your spouse?”; this is information that is harder to guess and cannot be found on any other platform.

Correct Browsing Habits

Yes, paying for movie streaming services such as Netflix can be costly, but it's certainly worth paying the subscription rather than using unsecured websites. These dodgy websites can consist of many viruses and may even be run by a hacker. So, you should always avoid suspicious links and do not enter any personal information into a website that appears to be unsecure. A secure website will have https:// at the start of the URL, or it has Secure Sockets Layers (SSL). Furthermore, some safe websites will also have a padlock icon indicating that there is security on the site.

A computer screen with coding and a lock symbol on it. | ViaScreens

Online Shopping on Secure Sites

There are thousands of online retailers and among these are many scams that you must look out for. The best way to avoid being a victim to debit or credit card theft is to only shop on trusted and well-known sites, such as Amazon. In addition to this, when shopping online, it is advised that you use a credit card as opposed to debit as they offer more protection against fraudulent charges.

Don’t Put Everything on Social Media

You may want to let your friends know that you are eating at your local restaurant or that you are about to go on holiday and, therefore, share a snap of your passport, but you would be silly to do so. Sharing too much information on social media can make it easy for hackers to gain access to your information. For example, as mentioned previously, if your password is a combination of your name and birthday, a hacker can go onto your Facebook and find this data.

Use Two-Step Authentication

More platforms are starting to offer two-step authentication services, and this can supply you with extra security. The process works by including an added step into accessing your account; sometimes this will be a code that will be sent your mobile number. An action like this will help keep your data safe and prevent hackers from gaining access to your accounts. It is especially important to use this service on your banking account because should a hacker get access to this, it could result in you losing a considerable amount of money.

Here at Viascreens, we believe it is essential that you take the necessary steps to protect your information from hackers. We supply an array of screen protectors for smartphones, tablets and laptops. In order to keep your data protected, it is crucial that you are aware of those peering eyes surrounding you. To avoid visual hacking, our phone privacy screen can keep your display hidden.