February 1st is ‘World Change your Password’ day. Although we sideline this very important issue, with increased online activities and personal data, the threat of identity theft looms very high. Especially those of us using Facebook and other social networks, where most of our personal data is stored, require the password to be changed regularly. This is to prevent unscrupulous applications, hackers from stealing details for their personal gain. If you share your computer with someone, this poses more risk.
With increased use of credit cards online, on Amazon or iTunes and e-commerce websites the importance of changing your passwords regularly is a must and should be habitual. Certain banks and financial institutions have made it mandatory to change the banking passwords. However, for those who do not insist, you are personally responsible for changing your passwords.
Symantec in a recent study revealed that as much as 76% of the users had their passwords compromised. Cyber crime is highest than ever in the current age of heightened online activities.
How the passwords are stolen?
- By using key loggers on computers-both hardware and software.
- By using sophisticated phishing websites which look similar to your bank websites. These are mostly done by sending email to update personal details by hackers.
- Social engineering-By becoming a friend online.
- Over your shoulder – More than 30% instances.
- Installed video recorders to see your typed passwords.
What is the result of stolen passwords?
- Hackers will get control of your PC to launch DDOS – Distributed Denial of Service.
- Unauthorised access to your emails and personal documents.
- Unauthorised use of personal identification details.
- Use in sending Spam from your email account to a large number of individuals.
- Your financial information, credit card information stored on websites may be compromised.
- And many other flaws….
So make up your mind. Change your password today!
Be it your Facebook, Gmail, Yahoo, Online banking password and so on. This goes same for ATMs too. Act today, Be safe!