15 May Hackers are stealing & sharing your details
Your details might be all over the Dark Web… what is it?
There are three main tiers to the internet – the ‘Public Web’, comprising of only around 4% of the internet, is what we all use day to day, and includes things like websites and social media platforms. The ‘Deep Web’, representing around 93% of the net, consists of private systems, such as the cloud services we use as businesses. Leaving around 3% of the internet identified as the ‘Dark Web’, untraceable, and therefore a prime location for the shared activities between criminals of all kinds.
If a hacker has been able to steal a list of user login credentials from a particular system, these private details will have value to other cyber criminals and therefore shared and sold within the Dark Web.
Should I be worried?
If your login credentials have been exposed and posted on the Dark Web, they will be available to anyone & everyone that wants them…. and worse; if you happen to use the same repeat email address and password across multiple systems, such as your banking, social media, email and data storage, you’re incredibly vulnerable to attack across your entire internet presence.
What can I do about it?
Services are available to scan the Dark Web to identify first & foremost whether you are at risk. Such services can maintain a constant watch by trawling data held on the dark web for your email address, or other associated credentials, and then raise an alert if anything of note can be found.
If your details are found, you are then immediately aware of your vulnerability and can act by at least resetting your passwords wherever used.
Can I stop myself from becoming a target?
It’s almost impossible to stop yourself from becoming a target in the first place. We must all accept that at some point, our personal data will be stolen from somewhere.
BUT! What’s more important is being aware when we’re at risk and having a process in place to mitigate our the exposure of our business & personal data. By implementing best practices, such as setting secure passwords, regularly changing those passwords, ensuring we differ the passwords & login details across the different systems & services we use, and lastly, implementing features such as 2-Factor / Multi-Factor Authentication (2FA/MFA).
By utilising cyber security features, such as 2FA or MFA, we are able to add another step in the process of accessing our web-based data & services, beyond usernames and passwords. Should someone obtain your password and try to access a system that you use, you’ll receive a text message, phone call, or email to your device to authorise that login, providing a key hurdle to fault cyber criminals from getting to your data.
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