Increased Website and Email Hacking: What You Need to Know

Are some email providers more likely than others to get hacked?

Do I need to worry about my business’s website getting hacked?

How can I protect against cyber criminals?

These are all questions any technology user should be asking. Our goal is to keep you as safe online as possible, so we’ve provided some background information and advice on the increase in website and email hacking.

Which providers are most likely to get hacked?
Popular email and website management systems have a lot of benefits to users, but unfortunately they are most appealing to hackers as well. The larger the user base, the more profitable the hack will be. For example, Gmail for email and WordPress for web site management are more lucrative targets than more obscure solutions.

Are hackers really that savvy?
Sadly, yes. Hackers, scammers and spammers are becoming increasingly more sophisticated in their attacks, and the tools become easier to use. Some hacking tools can even be downloaded for free, or cyber criminals will provide hacking services for low costs.

How vulnerable is my email or website system?
New vulnerabilities are constantly being uncovered in underlying software, and it is not uncommon for firms to not publicly announce these vulnerabilities. Systems are not always updated or protected against breaches, which gives hackers a leg up. If your computer is not properly secured with anti-malware tools, anything the user does or has on your system is vulnerable, including saved passwords, keystroke capturing, etc.

Similarly, if a website’s underlying platform is not kept up to date, it can easily become hacked. Solutions like WordPress and Joomla utilize plugins and add-ons that become a major threat when not updated promptly.

How can I protect against hackers?
First and foremost, we suggest keeping your systems and software applications up to date. You should also use strong passwords and avoid keeping them in vulnerable locations, such as on your monitor or on a text file on your computer, and use two-factor authentication when available. Furthermore, install reputable anti-malware software on your computer and, if you have a web site, invest in a software-based firewall such as SiteLock. For email security, we highly suggested using hosted exchange.

If there are any questions we did not answer, or if you think you may be experiencing a hack, give us a call at 970-821-8592.

January 21, 2016

IT News

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