Whether you’re a private individual or part of a large organization, it’s never good to experience a data breach and your personal information being stolen. If you’re feeling stressed and confused about what to do next, take a breath and relax, because we’re going to guide you step-by-step on what to do when you’ve been hacked.
How to Know if Your Account has Been Hacked
With cybercrime having gone up by 600% during the pandemic, it only makes sense to protect yourself. But, even if you are protected, the worst can still happen. So, how can you tell if you’ve been the target of cybercrime or even identity theft?
- Trouble logging into your accounts?
If you can no longer (and very suddenly) log into your accounts, whether for work or personal use, this may be a sign that you’ve been hacked
- Getting sent notification emails?
If your account service providers are sending you alerts about login attempts you haven’t made, that’s a sure sign someone is attempting to gain access to your accounts.
- Unusual Online Behaviour
A strange message from an email address you don’t recognize? A social network post that you didn’t make? Or even worse, sudden charges on your credit cards or bank accounts? These are all signs that nefarious persons unknown have gained access to your accounts, and that you’ve been hacked.
Contact Your Organization About the Unusual Activity
If your work accounts are the target of a cyberattack, it’s important you notify your systems administrator right away so that they can take the appropriate action like updating the company’s password manager, security settings and security questions.
Usually, hackers will attempt to gain username and password information by posing as someone from your organization you recognize through an email account that looks just enough like the real one to fool you. E.g. [email protected] vs [email protected].
Practice constant vigilance to make sure you’re not accidentally giving up sensitive information.
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Alert Your Financial Institution to Any Suspicious Activity
Now, hopefully, you never find yourself in a position where your bank accounts or credit cards are the target of an attack, but if you do it’s important you notify your financial institution immediately so that they can put a hold on your account until things are sorted out.
Hackers can get their hands on your personal banking info through booby-trapped card readers, phone calls or social media scams claiming to be a government revenue service or spy software that watches you as you log in to your banking app.
That’s why you must always practice care when receiving calls from unknown phone numbers, giving away information (especially on your social media account) and making sure you don’t download sketchy apps on your mobile device.
Think You’ve Been Hacked?
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What to Do if You Get Hacked: Reset Your Passwords
If you’re certain that you’ve been the target of a cyberattack, the first thing you need to do is reset your usernames and passwords. This will ensure that the immediate attack can’t be repeated and limit the damage done to you.
It’s also advisable to refrain from using password storage services like Google Chrome’s Password Manager for personal use. If a hacker has already gained access to your Google account, in this case, then that person also has access to all of your other usernames and passwords and could do some very serious damage to your online accounts.
What to Do if Your Network is Hacked: Update Your Multi-Factor Authentication
Many businesses all over the world use this tactic to prevent hackers from taking advantage of leaked data. Multi-factor authentication is a method that requires two separate stages of authentication for any login attempt.
After first entering in your regular username and password, multi-factor authentication will then require you to enter in a randomly generated numerical code sent to a secondary device of yours (like your mobile device). That way, even if a hacker gains your login info, they won’t be able to hack into your accounts.
Contact Experts Who Can Help
If you’ve been the victim of a hack already, there’s an even higher likelihood that it can happen again. Experts agree the best way to protect yourself (and your organization) from repeated attacks is to enlist the aid of a managed service provider (MSP).
Here at Executech, we employ 24/7 network monitoring, threat mitigation, response and resolution to ensure that cyberattacks are stopped in their tracks and noticed immediately. Without monitoring like the kind we provide, attacks on business networks can go weeks or even months before they’re noticed.
Talk to us today to understand what robust cybersecurity looks like and how it can protect your business from future cyberattacks.