What You Should Know about Online Threats in 2016
As almost every aspect of your life becomes digital, you become more vulnerable to security threats. There are online threats you should be aware of because they are serious and can attack through any connected device. Here is what you need to be looking at in 2016:
Trojan: This threat hides malicious code inside a seemingly harmless program or file in order to gain access to your computer. Once it is inside, the program installs itself on your device, and communicates with a server in the background without your knowledge. An outside party gets access to your computer through a backdoor.
Scareware and Ransomware: They differ in their approach, but the common goal is to collect money by manipulating you into believing something that is usually untrue. Scareware more often takes the form of programs that pop up and tell you that your computer has a malware infection. When you click to remove the multiple instances of malware, it demands that you pay to buy the full version before the program can clean your system and rid it of the threats or infections. Ransomware operates a little differently in that after the hacker installs the malicious software it typically locks down your system outside of a window that lets you pay the ransom in order to regain use of it.
Network Sharing and Public Wi-Fi: Wi-Fi networks are infamously unsafe. You put yourself at risk because so many strangers come together on an open network and anybody can try to access your information.
Password Theft: This cyber security threat is growing as hackers continue to steal passwords in bulk.
Financial Attacks: Hackers attempt to infiltrate financial institutions with phishing software and malware. Several retailers had public security breaches in which customer’s personal information was exposed in 2014.
Spyware: Criminals can install this through a file download or a clicked pop-up without your consent. It can monitor your keystrokes and even delete your files.
Worm: Criminals can inject a worm into a network through a USB stick or e-mail attachment.
- Keep a firewall turned on continually to prevent hackers from stealing sensitive information or your password.
- Install or update antivirus software. It helps prevent malicious software programs from embedding your computer by disarming and/or removing them.
- Be careful about what you download because some attachments can elude strong antivirus programs. Never open an e-mail from strangers because it can unleash malicious code.
Turn off your computer after you finish using it because it is more susceptible to online attacks if you leave it on all of the time.
- If you think your device is infected, try following the steps below to remove the infection manually.
- Enter a safe mode.
- Delete temporary files.
- Download and run a different malware scanner than that which you installed originally.
- Use a virus removal device such as a bootable USB stick with pre-installed security software.
Need to get protected? The experts at BWS can provide customizable solutions and services for small, medium and large companies. BWS technicians have experience across many disciplines and can assist you with deciding how to deal with online threats. Contact us for more information.