4 Computer Security Myths That Will Cause Your Downfall


Don’t Let These Lies Make You Vulnerable

When it comes to technology, the name of the game is convenience. Making the user’s experience as streamlined and easy as possible is what almost all technology companies are looking to do. What they ignore, though, are the holes in security created with these new programs. These holes allow hackers to weasel their way in to your sensitive information. You might not consider these hackers a threat to your security. You might think that you have taken all the measures necessary to make your technology secure. These ideas have left you vulnerable to hacking for years. Don’t fall victim to these four computer security myths.

1. I Should Be Fine As Long As I’m Cautious

So maybe you’re already aware of all the cyber risks that could put your computer, and in effect, your livelihood, in danger. You stay away from shady websites, never click on emails from sources you don’t know, put up a firewall, and installed anti-malware and antivirus software. Great! Those can all help protect you. Unfortunately, they still might not be enough. As easy as it used to be to spot suspicious looking websites, today’s crooks are expert at subtly integrating their forms of attack into conspicuous, or often familiar looking, websites. In fact, the Heartbleed bug, which has been said to be the biggest cyber security threat in Internet history, compromised many popular websites and services, including: Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Netflix, and even Google. But that’s where you’re anti-malware and antivirus software has you covered, right? Well, not necessarily. The thing is, threats to cyber security evolve every single day. Hackers are constantly developing new and innovative ways to bypass or exploit current safety measures. That’s why simply installing the software application isn’t enough; you also need to make sure it’s regularly updated. Luckily, most anti-malware and antivirus programs offer automatic or scheduled updates to help keep your computer security as up to date as possible. SEE ALSO: Repairing The Internet: The Aftermath of Shellshock

2. I Don’t Have To Worry Because I Don’t Have Anything Worth Stealing

Everyone has something worth stealing on their computer. Whether it’s financial information, like credit card or bank account numbers, or personal material, like your social security number or medical history records, you have information that can be valuable to someone else. Identity theft, for example, is a big business that affects approximately 15 million Americans each year. All thieves really need to set up a fake account is your name, social security number, and address. And even if you delete everything with sensitive information from your computer, it can still be stored in a different drive as a copy or hidden file, which hackers can easily recover. So, make sure your network is secure and you’re running updated malware and virus software to regularly check for any type of corruption.

3. Only Computer Devices Are At Risk

With cyber security focusing mostly on desktop and laptop computers, it’s common to forget that your smartphone, tablet, and any other device that connects to the Internet can also be at risk. For instance, the ease and convenience of mobile devices have made it the forefront of technology right now, and hackers have developed many ways to take advantage of its rise in popularity. Threats can come in the form of a random text from an unknown number, a seemingly well reviewed game app, or a fraudulent link on a well-renown website. Luckily, however, many trusted antivirus companies now offer security applications specifically for mobile devices. So, you might want to consider installing one for your protection. There’s also Bluetooth and other wireless enabled devices that can be hacked. This includes: security cameras, home automation devices (like thermostats, keyless door locks, and light controls), automobiles, and even medical devices with microprocessors. Unfortunately, there isn’t much you can do to protect yourself from these threats, unless you have control over the manufactures network, but perhaps knowing about these vulnerabilities will have you reconsidering your need for these devices in the first place. SEE ALSO: Top 3 Reasons You Need To Rethink Hacking

4. Nothing’s Happened So Far, So I Must Be OK

The days of obvious computer virus or malware symptoms are long gone, with most threats designed to run undetected while you go about your daily business. So, just because you never got that pop-up window warning you that a virus has been detected, doesn’t mean you’re in the clear. Here are some signs that might indicate you’ve been hacked:
  • Your computer is running slower than usual
  • There are mysterious files or programs on your computer that you didn’t put there
  • Files have been deleted or the contents have been altered
  • Some programs won’t open or won’t work properly
  • A toolbar has been added to your browser
  • Your password doesn’t work anymore
Just because technology and security have evolved does not mean that we are safe from cyber security threats. In order to protect yourself, you’ll need to keep your guard up and your connected devices up to date with the strongest security possible.
Date of original publication:
Updated on: November 10, 2015

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