We tend to think of hackers as loners but the reality is that cybercrime has evolved into an extremely sophisticated and collaborative system. Hackers have a variety of motives, from financial gain to political objectives. Knowing what hackers are looking for can help you avoid attacks and create systems to protect your small companies.
Some hackers employ their skills to do good. They discover security holes and report them so that they can be repaired. White-hat hackers are paid by their employers to do penetration tests. Some hackers are more sinister and include those who steal personal information to commit fraud with credit cards, identity theft or use viruses to make unauthorised payments or shut down devices.
A secure password is the first line of defense in your fight against hackers. The addition of two-factor authentication to websites like social media and banking can also increase your security. Encrypting your hard drive is another simple way to block hackers from gaining access to your sensitive data even if they manage to break into your device. Update your operating system, browsers and important applications regularly. Most devices automatically download updates that can close software vulnerabilities that might otherwise allow hackers to access or steal information.
We live in a digital world, where our smartphones, laptops, computers and tablets are always online. Hackers are looking for information that you share online. It is tempting to loose your guard and give away too much. To keep your data secure do not shop or use your personal accounts through public Wi-Fi, and make sure you don’t keep any account running continuously.