9 Methods Used By Hackers to Steal Your Data
Common Computer Hacks Used to Steal User Data
Using a computer on a daily basis is probably something you do without much thought. Cyber-criminals use a number of computer hacks to steal your sensitive information and sell it on the black market.
Computer hacking is big business these days. Some hackers make around $80,000 a month by stealing information and advertising views.
With that type of incentive, a lot of people are turning to hacking to make quick money. But how are they doing it?
This article will show you nine common computer hacks to help you avoid being a victim.
1. Keylogger Computer Hacks
This type of hacking is dangerous because it allows hackers to get your personal information from your keystrokes.
A keylogger is a program that records everything you type in a file that hackers can access. This hacking term can apply to both software and hardware. It's also called keyboard capturing.
Software keyloggers will target the programs you have on your computer. Hardware keyloggers will look at the keyboard itself, electromagnetic emissions, and smartphone sensors.
2. Denial of Service (DoS/DDoS)
If you've heard of the infamous Anonymous attacks, this is one of their favorite methods.
This type of hacking requires many computers to target one. They all send or request information from the same computer or server at the same time, causing it to crash.
This means that people who are trying to use the program or site won't be able to get through.
Rather than many individuals coordinating and working together, a DoS attack usually involves one person or small group using a lot of botnets or zombie computers.
This is another good reason to make sure your computer is secure from malware and viruses. You could end up hosting a DoS attack from your device.
3. Fake Wireless Access Point (WAP)
This type of hack is targeted against people using a less secure access point.
Let's say that you like to browse the Web or do online work at Starbucks. You access their WiFi, which is unsecured.
A hacker creates a fake WiFi access point that looks like the real Starbucks one, hoping to trap you into logging onto their WiFi. Once you're on it, they can capture your information.
This can be pretty dangerous if you're looking at your bank statement or paying a credit card bill. Even checking your email on a hacker's WiFi can get you in big trouble.
This type of computer hack can go on forever without the victim knowing it. Most people probably never know exactly how they picked up an eavesdropping hacker.
Basically, the hacker monitors your information and waits for anything that interests them.
They're not trying to crash your computer or server. They just want to know specific details, such as your credit card numbers, confidential work stuff, or passwords.
While it will take them awhile, they can get a lot of damaging information just from watching your computer.
Phishing is a common and dangerous computer hack. Have you ever received a suspicious email from a reputable company or website? That was a phishing email.
These hackers get a list of sites you use and send you a fake email posing as those sites or companies.
Some common examples are Facebook, Amazon, or local banks.
In these emails, hackers ask you to click a link to access and secure your account or something like that. If you click the link to log into your account, they will capture your login information and can then hack your real account.
To avoid this, never click the links in emails. If you get a message saying something is wrong with your Amazon account, go to Amazon's website to check out your account. This cuts out the hacker, and you'll see that your account is fine.
6. Malicious Software
There are many different types of malicious software. The most common are viruses, worms, trojans, and spyware.
They all have different operating principles, but their actions are usually the same.
Their goal is to send your information to a hacker.
It's pretty easy to know if you have this type of computer hack. Your computer will start slowing down. Running an antivirus program will help eliminate these problems to a certain extent.
This type of hacking is scary, especially when you have sensitive or just a lot of information on your computer.
Ransomware is a type of software that downloads to your computer, almost always by accident. Once it's on your computer, it locks you out.
You will usually see a black page that tells you to wire money to an address in order to get back into your computer.
There are other ways to get it off, but the hackers warn you that this could erase your computer. This is why a lot of people end up paying hackers to remove their ransomware.
No one wants to lose all their data, and hard drive recovery can be difficult.
8. Clickjacking or UI Redress Attack
This type of hacking can actually be harmless to most users. The hacker sets up a fake link, which redirects the person to another site.
The benefit to the hacker is the advertising money they earn by getting more hits on their site. The user is just frustrated that they clicked a fake link, and have to return to the original site to get their download or link.
This type of computer hacking usually happens in app downloads, movie streaming, and torrent sites.
9. Bait and Switch
This is a tricky hacking technique to get malicious software onto your computer.
A hacker will buy advertising space and display a fake link to something you might actually want, such as Microsoft Office or an Itunes download.
When you click the link, one of two things may happen.
First, you might be directed to a site filled with malware. This will instantly bog down your computer, and you'll know you've been attacked.
The second type of hacking will send you to an authentic looking page, and you'll download the program you wanted. At least, that's what you'll see. Instead, you'll be downloading a virus named Microsoft or Itunes something.
The hacker will then have access to your computer without you even knowing it.
Keeping Yourself Safe
Now that you know the most common computer hacks, it's time to make sure your computer is safe. Simple things, such as installing antivirus software and firewalls, can make all the difference.
Check out this article to see if your data has been compromised!