There are computer hackers trying to get into your e-mail, your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIN, bank accounts and they’ve been pretty successful this week based on the number of calls and e-mails to The Marketing Square.
The only thing you can do to protect yourself is to be careful when signing onto any computer.
You know you’ve been hacked when a friend lets you know the following:
1. Twitter: You’ll get message that seems to be from a friend but it says:
– I can’t believe you put this picture up (link will be attached)
–This blog said something really awful about you (link will be attached)
–You should read what this guy said about you. It’s pretty bad (link will be attached)
–There are horrible things said about you in this story, did you see it? (link will be attached)
–I can’t believe someone posted this picture of you (link will be attached)
Subject line, e-mail message, link or attachment will have the word “sex” in it. Usually from a very conservative friend, client or acquaintance.
Your wall will have a post from someone you know that says:
“_______ knows your top 5 fears.
“_______ just answered a quiz describing your personality.
“_______ wrote your favorite romantic places on their wall.
“Look at this video, I can’t believe it”
In all cases Don’t Click the link or Open the item. It’s natural to be curious. But you’ve been warned. There is a virus attached.
Follow these rules to help prevent hackers, viruses and SPAM from infiltrating your computer:
Tips for Secure Computer Use:
1. Don’t use a Wi-Fi connection to open any private or sensitive information–ever
– Anyone sitting outside a business offering WI-FI can hack into your account and computer
2. Don’t open your banking information on a Wi-Fi connection
3. Change passwords frequently
4. Create difficult passwords–no pets, birthdays, nicknames
– Upper and lower case letters with numerals and punctuation marks
– Your password should be so hard you have to write it down to remember it
5. Don’t e-mail your password to anyone, ever
6. Don’t text passwords to anyone
7. Don’t logon to public computers to check your bank account
8. Clear your search history frequently
9. DO NOT hit “REMEMBER PASSWORD” ever
– When you allow your computer to remember your passwords anyone who signs on or hacks into your computer has all your information. You make it easy. You should re-login every time you sit down.
10. Use Norton Anti-Virus protection on PCs or buy a Mac
11. Be very, very, very cautious opening e-mails with attachments of any kind
– It’s e-mail. If you get an e-mail from someone you don’t know personally, don’t open it. Resist the urge to see what it is. If you’re that curious…you probably need a hobby. Don’t open things compulsively.
– You can dump it into SPAM and if someone really needs to reach you they’ll call you.
12. Use different passwords for every account
13. Keep passwords written down in a secure location in your wallet
– Not in your car, desk or your iPad or iPhone, places that you leave alone for any length of time.
– There are secure password keepers in iPhone and Droid apps. But if hackers can get into Lockheed-Martin, they can get into your apps.
What To Do If You Get Hacked
1. If you do get hacked, the first thing you should do is call your bank and credit card companies to alert them.
2. Ask them to change your passwords and secure your account.
– Do not open your hacked computer to check your bank account. Get your computer repaired or buy a new one. Then sign into your bank account.
– If you go to a friend’s computer to do so, you’ll have to make sure they have virus protection, and you have to erase cookies and history after your use.
3. Ask the bank to put this call into your records noting the date and time that you called to request this activity halt. CYA.
4. Call your credit cards and tell them to put alerts on all your cards and to deny any online purchases.
– The first purchase a hacker will make is online.
5. If you can’t logon to your computer, keep your computer turned off. Stop messing with it. Unplug it and take it in to be scanned by a professional.
– Call a local Staples, Best Buy, Office Depot and take your computer in to be checked for a minimal fee or free.
6. Enroll in a credit card and personal identity protection program.
– Credit cards offer it for a few dollars per month. Your bank should offer it as well.
– National programs offer it for all your accounts and identifications for as little as $10 a month.
Do not wait to see what happens. It will be too late and your identity, your personal information can be stolen. Better to be cautious than careless.
The Marketing Square is a Winter Park, Florida, website and advertising agency providing clients with website new builds and website rebuilds, Super Sites, Starter Sites and website launches and marketing plans for year-round success.