This week amid news that Russian hackers offered up 1bn email addresses and passwords for sale after a mass hacking effort, we felt it a great time to delve into the world of Cyber Security & why… hacked email could cost you BIG!
The timing couldn’t have been more relevant, having just filmed at the #FinCyberAUS conference in the Ivy, Sydney on Tuesday 3rd May 2016. With live demonstrations of how hackers exploit security weaknesses especially though email.
Unfortunately many people don’t see the security of their email as such a big deal, after all it is just my email – right?
Let’s think about that statement for a second…
Hacked email could cost you BIG!
With the majority of websites across the web, people sign up either with their email address, Google account or Facebook, all of which are email account based at the core. So think what the implications from that are. What happens if you forget an password on a website? Simple ‘Forgot my password’ right? That is exactly the issue! With access to your email a hacker could reset all passwords to every site you have visited!
But how would they know which sites I have signed up to?
Think about any time you sign up to a website – that cheeky little confirmation message you get via email – they are basically creating a list inside of your email account of all the site you have ever signed up to!
So what’s the big deal – it’s only websites and social media related stuff right? WRONG!
The implications of a compromised email account are HUGE! There is so much that we do online day to day nowadays that it basically becomes an identity threat issue as well..
Let me explain how:
Think online payments & banking for a start, these are attached to your email & a hacker could easily RESET your password direct to your email and have unrestricted access to your funds and associated accounts & cards!
So be careful!!
Unfortunately a lot of people use the same password for everything anyway – which has always been a bad move. If you are someone who struggles to remember passwords, you can use a reputable piece of software like LastPass / One Password – that means you remember one master password and the software keeps the others in a vault behind that locked master password.
OK – I’m freaking out now – What do I do to be more secure!?!
Our intention was not to freak you out but instead to help you become more aware and to help you avoid issues just like this… Gmail was notable one of the least affected of the big email providers – Probably because they encourage users to use 2-step Authentication that means if a hacker attempts to login – they would need your device to do the 2nd part of the authentication. Which means you are alerted at attempts to compromise your account via forced logins.
This is easy enough to set up – should you need help please contact us email@example.com and Tristan will be happy to assist you with this. We would also love to hear your feedback & comments about this article, so please do get in touch.