fbpx
Setting Up A Strong Password

Setting Up A Strong Password

Setting Up A Strong Password

Setting up a strong password. Let’s beat the hackers!

Don’t we all want secure passwords to protect our accounts?

Your password is like a sacred key that enables you to access your own personal space, your kingdom that holds your personal data, information and whatnot.

So you must be inquisitive to find out as to ‘what are the best practices to create a strong password’ to protect your accounts against malware, viruses etc.

 

How the passwords are hacked:

It is important to understand how password hacking takes place. Hackers can use several ways and means to access your password.

The easiest of all the ways is to buy your passwords off the dark web. Buying and selling of login credentials in the black market involves huge money. This option is more applicable in any case wherein the user has not changed the password for many years.

In case you’ve managed to keep your password off from the blacklists, then the cybercriminals will try to crack them. There are several ways to do the same. They can use Brute force attacking in which hackers automate the software to try as many combinations as possible in a quick time. Some software are programmed to try 350 billion guesses per second. Scray, isn’t it?

The hackers can also use the dictionary attack. Unlike brute force attack which tries to hack your password using every combination of sybmols, numbers and letters, a dictionary attack tries a list of words we usually find in a dictionary

A phishing attack is another tactic used by hackers to deprive you of your password. Cybercriminal tries to trick, intimidate, or pressurize you in a way that you end up doing what they want. A phishing email is the one which says that there’s something wrong with your credit card account etc. It mostly directs you to click a link, which then leads you to a fake website that resembles your credit card company website in its general outlook. As soon as you enter your website, they grasp the data and there they go.


Common mistakes we make:

Before we learn about strong passwords, let’s discuss the common mistakes we make while setting up the password:

  1. Don’t keep too complex passwords. You need to make simple but smart passwords.
  2. Don’t recycle the same ones. If you’re using the same passwords across different websites can be very dangerous for your emails, banking and social media accounts. Once and if they get stolen, the can be used to access a lot of data.
  3. Never use the ‘save’ or ‘remember me’ option on public computers/devices.
  4. Avoid commonly used, familiar of predictable passwords such as 12345.
  5. Never store a password list on your computer.

 

Composition of a strong password:

First and foremost don’t opt for something which is obvious and predictable such as sequential numbers or letters. Avoid using your name and date of birth in your passwords. The hackers will try to put everything they know about you when they will attempt to guess and access your password.

  • Don’t keep a short password.
  • Use a combination of letters(upper case, lower-case), numbers, and symbols.
  • Choose uncommon words, numbers and patterns.
  • Don’t share your personal data with websites/people.
  • You can pick up a sentence and then mold it into a password
  • Use two factor or multi-factor authentication which helps you add an extra layer of protection. By using the same hackers would require something more than a password to access the account, such as a code sent to your phone, biometric etc

 

What more can be done:

You can protect your login information further with these routine high-security tips:

  • Try to use a VPN when on public Wi-Fi. By doing that when you log into accounts, no one can intercept your username and password.
  • Try to choose a hard-to-guess security question while setting up an account. You should opt for one which only you know the answer.
  • Do not share your password via text or email.
  • Ensure to have an up to date antivirus (Don’t have one? Try Bitdefender antivirus at an amazing price offered by GSNI) If ay malware or threat somehow beats your string defense and breaks into your system then only a good antivirus will save the day for you by promptly detecting and neutralizing it.
Mobile Security

Mobile Security – A Dire Need or Just an Add-On!

Mobile Security - A Dire Need or Just an Add-On!

Mobile Security - A Dire Need or Just an Add-On!

Mobile device security commonly known as mobile security is a term which we hear often now a-days. We can see new and advanced versions of mobile devices being launched every day aiming at catering the daily needs of the users/businesses at a larger extent. Mobiles not only fulfill the communication needs but are also used to plan, organize and execute day to day tasks. The extent to which mobile phones have become a part of private life is not a secret either.

With mobiles being the hub of our daily life and carrying an increasing amount of sensitive information, they have also become the nucleus of new risks.

How Mobile Phones Are Targeted:

Mobile phones just like computer, tablets etc are the prime targets of the attacks. These attacks mostly exploit any inherent weaknesses in smartphones and can come from different communication modes such as Short messaging service (SMS, aka text messaging), Multimedia messaging service (MMS), Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, installation of apps etc.

There are also exploits which have the capability to target software vulnerabilities in the browser or operating system of the mobile. An exploit is a piece of software, a chunk of data, or a sequence of commands that has the potential to take advantage of any bug or vulnerability of the device to cause unintended behavior to occur on computer/mobile software, hardware etc. It usually includes things like gaining control of a computer system denying access to the owner etc.


Prime Targets for Hackers:

  • Data: smartphones are excessively being used for data management and may contain authentication information, private information, personal pictures, documents, sensitive data like credit card numbers, activity logs (call logs) etc.
  • Identity: Mobile phone devices are highly customizable. If the same is linked with your identity the hackers may want to steal the identity of the owner of a smartphone to commit some offences.
  • Availability: Hackers can limit access to a mobile device and can then deprive the owner of its use.

 

Types of Threats:

A smartphone user is unwillingly exposed to a number of threats. In, the number of mobile threats grew by 260%. These threats can interrupt the operation of the smartphone and can transmit or modify user data.

There threats to mobile devices also include annoyance, stealing money, invading privacy etc. some ways the hackers attack devices are:

  • Botnets Attacks: In such attacks, hackers usually infect multiple machines with malware. Victims are generally by these attacks via e-mail attachments or upon accessing the compromised websites. Resultantly, the malware gives hackers the remote control of effected devices, which can then be used to perform harmful actions.
  • Malicious Mobile Applications: It is a common practice that hackers upload malicious programs/games to smartphone application marketplaces. The programs are intended to steal personal information.
  • Posting Malicious links on Social Networks: It is another effective way to spread malware where hackers can place Trojans, spyware etc. on social networks.
  • Spyware: Hackers use spyware to hijack phones. This allows them to hear calls, view text messages and e-mails. They can even track someone's location through GPS updates.

When you go through all this information, it becomes evident that the mobile security is not just an add-on and it should not be treated like one. It is a dire necessity and we must do all that is needed to protect our personal data and private space. So here is what we can do.

How to Ensure Mobile Security:

So Here is What You Can Do to Save Your Mobile Device.

  1. Install Anti-Virus Software: You must use reliable mobile security/antivirus software on your phone.

 

  1. Ensure to set up a secure password.

 

  1. Be Careful About what you’re Downloading on your phone. Unknown files specially from unverified sources should be avoided.

 

  1. Keep Your Device's Operating System Up-to-Date by allowing timely automatic updates.

 

  1. Always connect to a secure

 

  1. Don't Jailbreak or root your phone.


Be Vigilant About Applications:
It is important to understand that some apps could themselves be malware. Hence, we must limit their functionality and activities (for example, restricting the apps from accessing our location information via GPS, blocking it’s access to the our address book etc). You should only access/download application which guarantees privacy and integrity of the information they handle.

Technology

Covid19: Impact of Technology and it’s Challenges in 2020

Covid19: Impact of Technology and it’s Challenges

Covid-19: Impact of Technology and it’s Challenges

What the world is going through since the beginning of the year 2020 seems like a story coming straight out from science fiction. Covid-19 struck the world and instantly effected the pace and quality of lives all around the world.

The economies and businesses around the world came to halt and life almost stood still. The statistics to date are not showing any positive progress and the pandemic continues to spread despite countries following extreme precautions and complete lock downs.

Covid-19 and Economies like Pakistan

The situation seems to be more critical for developing economies like Pakistan. The impact of covid19 on such countries is far stretched and callous as they’re struggling with extreme economic challenges including the closure of the business unit and unemployment. However, as they say that every challenge opens up doors to new horizons.

The uncertain situation and lockdowns pushed people to look for alternatives that could support them well in dealing the situation.

Technology Came for Rescue

Technology came for rescue of human beings. People around the world including Pakistan leaned on to it, considering it to be the only way out.

In Pakistan, for most of the big giants/multinationals the idea of working from home is not new. E-mails is a constant in almost all organizations. Tools like meet, zoom, Skype and number of other platforms were also being used to conduct day to day activities even before covid19.

With covid19, use of these and many other platforms/tools became an instant hit with smaller organizations, businesses, learning institutes, schools and what not. Technology became an essential for supporting communities in their economic, social, learning etc needs.

Technology is Not All About Cons

With technology being such a hit, every other business and unit has started incorporating the same, examples of which are grocery stores who came up with their apps and online payment options.

However, we must remember that technology comes along with it’s own set of cons. If people are getting more connected virtually, at the same time they are more exposed to viruses, malware, phishing attacks and hacking.

According to the World health organization since the beginning of COVID-19 pandemic there is a dramatic increase in the number of cyber-attacks and email scams targeting the public at large.

In April, 2020, some 450 active WHO email addresses and passwords were leaked online along with thousands belonging to others working on the novel corona virus response. The leaked credentials did not put WHO systems at risk because the data was not recent.

How to Deal with the Malware Menace

WHO are now migrating affected systems to a more secure authentication system. The question arises how to deal with such issues? For people with technical background, this may seem like a childish thought but for a layman or people with less technology exposure, this is a matter of huge concern. So what to do??

All professional recommend the use of the best antivirus, cyber-security systems in your devices. Antivirus and cyber security systems may appear to be completely new and alien jargons for people who are new to the world of technology.

When people begin their search to deal with malware, hacking, etc, and look for the best antivirus and cyber security systems, most of them try to reach out for free antivirus options or something which is less costly.

However, that’s not the right approach. No matter your computer or device runs Android, Mac or Windows, cyber criminals can carry out amazingly sophisticated attacks to target machines across operating systems (OS). Hence, you cannot deny the importance of choosing antivirus software that's designed for your OS and caters to your computing behaviors.

Antivirus software which is poorly designed can be as useless as a car without fuel. So here's a guide for choosing antivirus software, including common pitfalls and recommendations.

Choose Software which has a light System Load

Antivirus software are running in your computer's background all the time so it's important that it performs effectively.  Pick software with features that is compatible with your machine and are tailored to the type of computing you're most commonly doing.

Choose an Easy to use Antivirus Program

Buying antivirus software and then turning it off only because it's too complicated to use will in itself be a way to open yourself up for attacks and vulnerabilities.

Also, people often start using antivirus programs but fail to keep them updated with the latest software releases. So choose a program which is easy to use.

Even if you aren't well-versed in using antivirus programs, try to choose a program that offers good customer support customer support. Competent customer support teams can help you get the most from the software.

 Keep A Check as to What Works Best for You in Detecting & Removing Malware

Cyber threats are constantly evolving, so it's impossible to rely on antivirus software to protect your computer against every piece of malware, spyware or adware. The best antivirus software for Mac machines is not necessarily the best performing software on a PC. So we must read up-to-date news from trusted news sources to select and determine the most efficient, high-performing programs for your OS.

By keeping these small tips in mind, you can undoubtedly opt for a best antivirus system.