The hacking term refers to a technical effort to manipulate network connection and to get unauthorized access to any device or network. Hacker is a person who needs to be highly skilled and technically proficient in programming and computer networking. Lately, computer hacking has become common and many users around the world are coming up with this complaint and going through this technical misery. Data theft, denial of access to user’s own account and junking a device with malicious files, these all result from hacking. This can be a severe threat to your privacy, to your reputation if your social network account gets hacked or even it can affect your business reputation in case your business website undergoes such attack. Clicking any fraudulent link can cause hacking and data loss. Hackers send weird emails containing malicious links that can be very favorable for the hackers if you opt to open those links. A hacker may alter system or security features to get his desired goal. But when there is a suffering there is always a solution, you can prevent your device from hacking and cracking by following a few simple steps which are mentioned below. All you need to do is to be vigilant enough to cope up this technical intrusion.
1. Be Alert on Public Wifi
Isn’t always a source of pleasure when you find an open Wifi?. Yes, it is, most of the people connect to any public Wifi in no time without even realizing that this can leave their device vulnerable to the hacking tricks. You must alert when using any public Wifi and you should check its authenticity by asking any of the employees of the place you are in. Hackers can trick users by making up a fake Wifi disguised as an official and legitimate one. So you need to ensure the authenticity of the Wifi you want to connect to save yourself from being a victim of hacking. To avoid being hacked when using any public Wifi hotspot to need to send your information only to those websites that are completely encrypted and avoid using those mobile apps which require your personal or financial information when using a public Wifi. The information you transmit while sending emails, sharing pictures and videos and using any social website or financial website, all this data is stored on the server that can be easily accessed by the hacker if you get caught in his net. To avoid this, you need to give information only to those trustable websites which use a strong encryption that enables your personal or financial information to be sent only to their server. Https in the web address show that the website is encrypted but you need to see https on every page of the website because some websites only use encryption on their login page and giving information to their unencrypted pages can make your account vulnerable. In contrary to this mobile apps have none visible sign that can show encryption to the users and it is said most mobile apps don’t use encryption. So better not using such apps on an unsecured Wifi because it will only be like digging your own grave.
2. Use a VPN for Privacy
The places where your information can become vulnerable are when it is on your PC when it is on the server you are using and while it is in transit to the internet. For shielding your information when it is on your device you can use anti-virus. For saving your data from the server the only option you have is to trust the internet service provider or use a reliable connection. Saving your data that goes to the internet is difficult to protect and is often gets hacked if you are not using a VPN. Internet snooping always needs an IP address but a VPN can mask your original IP address and this way it might save your information and privacy to be breached. An encrypted VPN uses tunneling protocols and encryption techniques to prevent disclosure of your private information. If an attempt of network traffic sniffing is made, the attacker would only find the encrypted data that could not be decoded when VPN is turned on.
3. Install and Update Antivirus, Anti-malware Frequently
An antivirus is a software designed to detect viruses and expel them from a device. It is an important part of multi-layered security strategy. Antivirus checks every file you open to making sure it is free from unknown viruses and malware. For instance, if you accidently download any file that contains viruses your antivirus will automatically detect those viruses and notify you. Updating an antivirus or anti-malware is a matter of utmost importance. Such software needs to be updated regularly to enhance their efficiency and to deal with new viruses and malware. So you are strongly recommended to use and update your antivirus or anti-malware regularly. However, some antiviruses have the feature of updating themselves automatically.
4. Stay Away from Unknown Emails
To prevent your device from getting viruses and malware, you have to stay away from the emails sent to unknown recipients. Scammers use very appealing subjects to trap you like news of lottery or online jobs that can easily attract any user and they click the malicious links in the email, such links are most likely to dodge you and intercept your personal or financial details and ultimately put you into a misery. So all you need to do is to avoid opening any email from an unknown recipient because it may contain any wayward link that can harm your device or you may lose the privacy of your personal or financial details. You should only trust a reliable source because scammers are everywhere all they want you to make such mistake and be the victim.
5. Avoid Suspicious and Unknown Links
The practice of sending malicious or fraudulent links to trap somebody to personal information like password or credit card number is known as a phishing scam. You can safeguard your device from this scam by not clicking on any link that seems suspicious or is not any reliable source. A phishing scam is considered to be a mind game, a scammer tries to put up the most attractive link so that the user would be caught in his trap easily. To save your personal information and privacy all you can do is to avoid clicking malicious links.
6. Use two-factor (2FA) authentication
Two-factor authentication is the second level of authentication to your account log-in procedure. It is a computer access control that gives access to users when they provide evidence of authentication. After providing your username and password your account may ask for some other details like phone number, pre-decided to code, fingerprints or a voice check ensure your account’s security and to prevent your account to be accessed by any person other than you. This means if someone steals or guesses your password, they still can’t sign in to your account because they don’t have your phone number or other personal details. Many popular websites have now applied two-factor authentication to ease their users. However, sometimes it can irritate and a bit time taking but these factors should be neglected to improve your account’s privacy because privacy concerns should never be compromised.
7. Keep Strong Password
Your password is something you should always keep private and strong. Here comes a million dollar question which is how to keep a strong password? A strong password should be a combination of number, uppercase, lowercase, and symbols. Never go for a password that contains any of your personal detail like your phone number, date of birth, your company name or your loved one’s name because such password can easily be guessed. You should always keep changing your password to avoid hacking and keep a different password for all your accounts and emails. This will save your other accounts to be hacked too if any of your passwords gets leaked. Saving your passwords of various accounts on your PC is not a good idea, this can cause losing the access to all your accounts if somebody hacks your device.
According to a famous proverb “Precaution is always better than cure”, we must make precautionary measures to ensure our privacy. When you go online your biggest fear is to be the victim of hacking or data theft, so you better be very vigilant and avoid any kind of negligence because a single mistake can cause you heavy loss. However, nobody can give you full assurance that your account will never be hacked if you use all the above-mentioned steps but using all the precautionary measures can minimize the chances of hacking and can make your device more secure than before. In a nutshell, be alert and make sure you follow all the above steps before going online.