Protect Yourself From The Hackers

Published 22 May 2014 by Alice Flook, CANDDi
Read this in about about 2 minutes

With news this week about eBay being hit by one of the biggest hacks this year, millions of people around the world have had their personal details including home addresses, phone numbers and passwords exposed. How can you protect yourself on the internet?

EBay insist that financial information was not shared however, the cost of exposing private personal data can be just as damaging.

Ok, so some of us are guilty for sharing the same password amongst different sites and when hacks like this happen, we are urged to change our passwords across the board. But we are tied when it comes to personal data, asides from changing your name, address and date of birth (although that wouldn’t be too much of an issue for some!). With this in mind, we thought we would share a few tips of how to keep your content secure.

Only The Bare Necessities

Simply, the safest way to keep secure is to avoid sharing personal information. Sounds far easier than it is but do we really think whilst handing over our home address and phone number to an internet company that really doesn’t require it.

Instead of thoughtlessly handing over your personal data so you can receive newsletters about home-ware or sports, only share what is needed. And if more information is asked for than what is needed then maybe access if the risk is worth it.

Use Third Party Websites For Payment

Paypal is a great example of a third party that allows you to internet shop without having to provide your card details to every website. Card details are one of the most valuable pieces of information and something the hackers are keen to get hold of. By using other secure forms of payment where you are not required to hand over your details with every transaction, it puts another block between you and the hacker.

Again, remember to use strong passwords and where possible, two factor authentication.

Stay Anonymous

Details including phone number, name, address, date of birth can be played around with. for example, if you live in an apartment, dont list the number, just the building name. Another is your date of birth; consider giving less important sites a fake birthday. This is one of the most common pieces of information used for verifying identity on banking and financial services.

Using alternative phone and email addresses will also keep the hackers at bay. The guardian have offered up this great tip:

“Some services can essentially be fobbed off with a fake phone number, but others may actually use that number. So instead of giving them your primary phone number, considering giving them a secondary phone number. One idea is to register another pay as you go account mobile phone number – simply getting a SIM from a mobile phone provider is often free and easy via the web or operator stores – and put that in an old phone for when you need to receive a call.”

Hope this helps!

Alice Flook
Who, what, when, now.

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