Cautions to take in Computer Hacking

Computer hacking can occur at the worst of times and when we least expect it. The worse of it being that once the hacking has occurred, you can never undo the damage that’s been done. However, you can take steps to prevent it. Follow along to find out how you can prevent a malicious cyber-attack.

  • SSL – Secure Socket Lockets are the next best thing when it comes to online security. Using an encrypted SSl protocol helps to prevent information being read in transit or gain access without the proper authority. For example, it can help safely transfer users’ personal information between a website and your database, without anyone else seeing it.
  • Updates – Updates are made because it is necessary to maintain the softwares functioning properly, and maintain all its security protocols. If an update is made for a phone, for example, it could be because of a security vulnerability. Delaying this will only expose you to attacks, which is what hackers are looking for.
  • Tighten network security – Doing simple and basic things such as changing passwords frequently, ensuring passwords are strong, as well as making sure all plugged into the network are scanned for malware each time they are attached can make a great difference. This can also apply to installing a web application firewall. A WAF can be software or hardware based, and its purpose is to fit between a website server and the data connection and read every data passing through it.
  • Remove autofill – Leaving autofill enabled on websites, can leave you vulnerable to attacks from any user’s phone or computer that has been stolen. With your information already plugged in and accessible, it is easy for hackers to steal it.
  • Back-up frequently – It is vital to ensure that everything is backed up. Whether it is weekly, daily, or 10 times a day in total, back everything up. From saving files, sharing docs, everything should be backed up. If the worst case scenario were to happen, it is important to backup in case one hard drive fails, etc.

With these helpful tips, you’ll be taking the right precautions to limit your chance of a cyberattack.


How to Identify & Avoid Unwanted Programs

Unwanted programs are constantly being downloaded, many times, without your permission. This is usually because some programs can only be downloaded as a bundle with another program. Sometimes, even loading up a website can cause other programs to be downloaded as well. Although some unwanted programs might not cause any direct harm or be a malware carrier, they can fill up space in your tech’s system, eventually causing it to shut down. Determining which programs are harmful for your technology can be difficult, especially when there are so many disguised like legitimate ones. Follow along to learn how you can identify and avoid unwanted programs.

Potential unwanted programs (PUPs) can cause technical issues such as:

      Slow computer program

      Display of Pop Up ads

      Collect personal information

One way to avoid installing such programs is by going through custom installation instead of simply clicking on the recommended download method. PUPs can easily be installed when you choose the recommended method. Especially when they are piggy-backing a legitimate program. Many times, the end user licensing agreements (EULA) contain information on the other programs that will be downloaded. Makes sure you read through the EULA and don’t accept bundle programs.

According to The Windows Club, a trick to avoid PUPs is to click on “I Decline” whenever you are downloading a program and the “I Accept” or “I Decline” options come up. However, if “I Accept” happens to be the only option, you should unclick the option and simply click “Next.” Don’t worry; you’ll still be able to download the program.

Want to make sure you haven’t already downloaded PUPs? Here are a few steps on how to identify and get rid of them:

      Go to your browser

      Go to your options

      Manage your add-ons

      Turn off all add-ons you do not recognize

For more information on identifying a PUPs and preventing them, contact M&H online or by phone!

What is Antispyware?

In order to fully understand what anti-spyware is, you must understand what spyware is and does. As we have mentioned before, spyware is a type of malware that can monitor your computer by either tracking the web pages you visit or everything you could be navigating to in order to collect any information available. In order to fully protect your devices from such malware, you must download a security program, like anti-spyware.

Anti-Spyware works very similarly to an antivirus program. It detects any unwanted spyware program, deactivates it and then removes it. The way it does this is by analyzing the codes of the programs and files installed into your devices. It then compares the codes to the spyware definitions the programs already knows. Detection in anti-spyware can either be based on the rules or the actual definition of the active spyware.

Once the security program detects a match between the program’s, or file’s, code and that of which the antispyware knows, it will disable with program and send an alert. When alert is sent, it will ask whether or not you would like to remove the spyware program and, sometimes, even give you the details on the spyware, like the name of it and where it came from. Of course, fully removing the spyware is the best option.

There are many types of malware protection programs. When asked if simply downloading an antimalware program can take care of all system infestations, the answer is no. The reason why there are so many different protection programs (antivirus, antispyware, antimalware, etc.) is because there are so many infections that target your devices a single malware program can only focus on so many. There are new malware being created all the time, it’s best to protect your systems for all those that are predicted as well as the unpredicted ones.

If you are not sure which antispyware program is best for your system(s) contact M&H for guidance.