Home Technology How Much of your Personal Data is Available to Hackers?

How Much of your Personal Data is Available to Hackers?

by admin

When the net was first unleashed on us, we only had to worry about password-protecting our emails. Nowadays, we have to think about so much, including our online banking and many accounts with various companies, not to forget the numerous social media platforms we use to keep in touch with friends and family.

Additionally, with most of us having our smartphones permanently connected to the internet, we’ve never been as hooked on the World Wide Web as we are right now. But most of us don’t realize that each breadcrumb we leave online is being tracked, putting our privacy at constant risk of being compromised by hackers. These are just a few examples of the things hackers use in an attempt to steal your data.

Personally Identifiable Information

Any personal information, including your name, address, birth date, medical, and employment records, is a hefty bounty for hackers. They could steal your identity and compromise your other accounts with just a fraction of this information. If it hasn’t happened to you, we reckon you probably know someone affected by a data breach.

Public Wi-Fi

Public Wi-Fi can be a lifesaver, especially when your phone’s internet connection is playing up, yet it’s not without its risks. These hot spots are often unprotected, meaning there’s no authentication required to access them. This makes it a hacker’s paradise when it comes to attempting to steal your data. Cybercriminals use various sneaky techniques, such as a ‘honeypot’ Wi-Fi hotspot, to grab all of your precious data.

Another easy way to access your information is to rumble your password, and some people make it too easy for hackers. This study and infographic on common passwords used worldwide by ExpressVPN reveal that generic phrases such as “123456” and “password” are among the most commonly used. Shockingly, many people will choose a password that can be easily guessed and reuse them across multiple accounts. Reusing passwords is a big no-no in cybersecurity realms, and it can compromise your safety even further. This study addresses the universal issue of poor password selection and proposes creating longer passwords with a minimum of eight random characters. You should also ensure your password is different for every account.

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Browsing Data

Everyone’s browsing data includes cookies, browser plugins that might store your data, and ISP logs. These are not only lucrative for advertisers but hackers as well. They can sell your information to organizations that may find it helpful to know what you’ve been searching for and what details you’ve disclosed. This could include your login information and financial data, which can be used for spear-phishing, an electronic communications scam that targets a person or company to obtain the information they can use in other scams.

Emails, SMS, and Instant Messages

These are all kept on servers, so bear in mind that there are records of your every interaction somewhere. Even though your passwords may be watertight, there could be plenty of information in sensitive emails that you don’t want anyone else, aside from whom they’re intended for, to see. These could be details of medical appointments, personal emails to loved ones, or even official documents, like paperless bank statements.

You can make it difficult for hackers to access all of this by using encryption as suggested by TechTarget, which you may already be using, unbeknownst to you. The padlock at the start of your browser address bar indicates that the link between your browser and the server you’re using is encrypted. Avoid sites that don’t have the padlock when sharing your data because it’s unsecured.

We often use the internet to make our lives easier. It takes two seconds to request an appointment online instead of waiting on hold. This frees up our time to do more enjoyable things, and we don’t give it a second thought when it comes to our privacy because we trust that our information will be kept confidential. However, this isn’t always the case. With hackers constantly upping their game to break security techniques, it becomes an endless game of cat and mouse. By keeping on top of the latest security trends and taking sensible precautions, you’ll make it difficult for your information to be stolen and protect your privacy.

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