What to do if you have been hacked




Nearly every week there is news about an organization or a company being hacked and its employee or customer data being made publicly accessible. Almost  no one is fully protected. However, not all of breaches are catastrophic, but a committed hacker can assemble a set of what seems unrelated data about an individual to direct a more elaborated attack and cause serious damage.

From an attacker view, it is more interesting that the breach remains secret. It is almost hard without announcements from dedicated services to get notified about data leaks, even though compromised organizations tend to inform their affected employees or clients. For personal computers, the best way to tell if your device has been compromised is to run an updated anti-malware software and order a scan.

If it happens that one of on-line services you use get compromised there are certain measures you have to do to reduce the attack’s impact.

Reset your password. This is the first and most important thing to do after you get notified about an online service compromisation you are subscribed to. Change the account password wherever you use the same password. Choose a unique password for each account and don’t reuse passwords.

Keep en eye on your credit cards. Check systematically the use of your credit card for suspicious activities. Cancel the concerned card if you remark anything suspicious and order a new one.

Secure your data. Attackers prefer to dupe users into giving their credentials by conducting what is called phishing attacks, rather than trying to guess well-chosen passwords.

There are factual measures you can adopt to assure your security:

  • Use two-factor authentication when the service supports it. A code will be sent to your mobile before you can log in to your account.
  • Think twice before clicking on links in emails.
  • Ensure, when you are entering sensitive information like credit card number or password, that the website uses an encrypted connection (Address starting with https rather than http without the s letter).

Source: How to tell if you’ve been hacked—and what to do about it.