What Can Hackers Learn About You From Your Computer?

Computer hacking is all too common in modern society. From email accounts being accessed to dangerous viruses being spread, it’s never pleasant  to find out that you’ve fallen victim to hacking. In fact, it can be quite scary.

Hackers Learn About You From Your Computer

There are many reasons why you should protect yourself against hackers, and Syntax IT Support London has put together a list of some of those reasons to really hammer home how important good security is for your device.

Who and Where

In an age dominated by social media, it has become very easy for hackers to work out your location by accessing your accounts. This means they know when you are home and when you are not, leaving you open to becoming a victim of theft as well as hacking.

Hacking your PC also gives cyber criminals access to any contacts you have on your device, putting your family and friends at risk of similar crime. Any documents or information you’ve saved or sent via email will be accessible to them unless the proper security is in place.

The Keys You Press

Through a process known as ‘keysniffing’, hackers can actually discover which keys on your keyboard you are pressing. That means every email you send, every document you create and – most worryingly of all – every set of log in details and passwords you enter can be seen by the hacker.

They receive the data through an unencrypted connection, meaning the information comes through loud and clear to them without the need for decoding. Big manufacturer brands such as HP and Toshiba have fallen victim to this, and are working to stop the events occurring.

The good news is hackers usually have to be very close by for this technique to work – usually within around 250 feet – so be wary when using your PC in crowded public spaces.

Credit Card Information

It’s frightening to think that hackers can gain access to your credit card details, and your cash as a result, but it happens. The most common way they succeed in this is through phishing via emails supposedly sent from trusted corporations. Such emails typically start by informing you of  suspicious activity taking place in your account – a clever way to make you verify your details.

Card details can also be stolen through good old fashioned hacking itself. Hackers are clever, and sometimes they manage to bypass security walls put up by websites. This means that any websites that have your card details stored might be putting you more at risk of a hacking attack.

Smile for the Camera

This might just be the most disturbing revelation of all. It turns out that hackers can now gain access to a victim’s webcam and video them while they hack other areas like their bank accounts. Anything that is attached to a computer which is connected to the internet is at risk of access by cyber criminals. It’s an extremely creepy thought to think of someone gaining access to your camera without you knowing it, so it’s advised that if your camera is separate from your laptop, unplug it. If not, maybe cover it up with a post-it or some tape.

The good news is that all of these scary possibilities are made much less likely by the presence of a good, up to date anti-virus software on your device. This is probably the hardest thing for hackers to crack, so it’s vital that you protect your device as much as you can. It’s also advised to have a little hunt through your computer’s settings — both general and in browser — to see whether there’s any options you can tick to up your device’s security.

Kevin Kholi

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