Yahoo Hack: How To Be Safe And Secure Online

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Yahoo Inc. says user account information was stolen in 2014 hack. Bloomberg / Getty Images

Cyber criminals are a continuous threat to internet privacy as computers and “the cloud” are relied upon for data transmission and storage. Cyber criminals hang out in either of three segments of the Web in search of personal user information. These sections are known as the Clear Web, the Deep Web and the Dark Web.

As Bloomberg reports, Yahoo Inc. says that a “state-sponsored actor” stole the personal information of at least a half of a billion users. Yahoo said in a statement Thursday that the attack happened in 2014 and the thief got away names, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, dates of birth, and encrypted passwords.

Organizations and electronics manufacturers offer platforms to help protect user data, but your online security system is only as good as the person managing it. Whether you’re an IT professional overseeing the network of a business or an individual managing your own personal files and data, don’t underestimate the threat of cyber criminals.

To protect your personal data, ensure that the devices that you’re using are as secure as they can be. The physical protection of mobile devices is a huge issue that some of us overlook. We can’t leave it up to device manufacturers and banks to be responsible for personal data information. In this day and age it’s not realistic think that you won’t be impacted. You can help reduce the probability of becoming a victim.

As demonstrated on the hit USA Network hit sci-fi series, “Mr. Robot”, hackers use password crackers designed to find every possible combination to easily reveal codes. Your passwords should be changed every 30 to 60 days and it’s best to choose passwords that are 9 to 12 characters long. It’s also wise to create a password comprised of letters numbers and special symbols. Remembering multiple passwords can be impossible for some and you can easily do this if you throw a hint of familiarity into the mix.

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