Hacking is the illegal process of gaining access to a computer system, application, or data and then using them to perform unlawful activities for financial gains, information gathering, or for notoriety.
Hackers aim to compromise digital devices such as smartphones, computer systems, and applications which may result in financial losses, trespassing of privacy, litigations, or even company insolvency.
Are you scared of hackers stealing and using your data for malicious ends? Do not worry! We have listed the 12 most impervious ways to prevent ethical hacking.
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Ways to Prevent Hacking
It is therefore extremely crucial for enterprises and individuals to take measures to stop hacking, and impede any attempts by malicious criminals.
1. Encrypt Your Files:-
One of the most reliable and easiest ways to prevent hacking is file encryption. Encryption is basically protecting your files with a password. It converts the usual data into plaintext, making it difficult for hackers to read without an authentication key.
Below is a list of dependable tools that can be used to encrypt a file
2. Browser Extensions:-
A major chunk of our time is spent using tech devices such as computers, laptops, mobile phones, etc. in which we access the internet. While surfing we may not even notice when we have gained entry into a malicious phishing site that might attack our data without our notice.
To prevent attempts of such online unwarranted attacks, we can install browser extensions that keep such sites at bay, and inform us of the threats before any downloads.
Here is a list of some commonly used extensions and add-ons.
- Online Security Pro by Comodo
- Anti-Malware Subzero
- Malwarebytes Browser Guard
- Avira Browser Safety
- Bitdefender TrafficLight
3. Anti-Malware programs:-
Another effective way of safeguarding against cybercrimes is to use Anti-Malware programs. These programs scan your system regularly and notify you of any suspicious activities, and also suggest ways to counter them.
There are a lot of anti-viruses available online and one can choose according to their requirements and budget from any one of the following:-
- Bitdefender Antivirus Plus.
- Kaspersky Anti-Virus.
- Norton AntiVirus Plus.
- ESET NOD32 Antivirus.
- McAfee AntiVirus Plus.
4. Ethical Hacker:-
The most Sureshot and advanced way of preventing hacking is by becoming/hiring an ethical hacker. Ethical hackers are legitimate hackers who know the cybercriminal tactics and then duplicate the steps of the sinister hacker.
This way ethical hackers test the systems, and then take steps to safeguard them against any data breaches, trespassing of software, and noticeable cracks that can help the black hat hacker slip into the network.
Ethical hackers ensure the complete safety of the organization’s security level by implementing practical scenarios and diverting attention toward any vulnerabilities in the system.
They work directly for large enterprises or are employed as consultants for cybersecurity companies.
5. Digitally Sanitizing the PC Manually:-
Users should often check their drives for any corrupted files or unwarranted downloaded programs themselves. This helps in gaining insight into one’s own system as a few malicious software could have trespassed the firewall and cybersecurity systems.
On finding any unwanted programs, users can then delete them manually or install file shredders and uninstaller programs to tackle any harmful effects.
6. Enable Two-Factor Authentication (2FA):-
Two-factor authentication acts as a double wall preventing any cyber-attacks. A code, OTP, or magic link is sent by the respective authorities anytime you try to log into your account or initiate any transactions. Thus, you can verify the authenticity of the proceedings, and report any uninvited steps.
You can ask your service provides to enable the 2FA for you, or download any of the following reliable apps
- Google Authenticator,
- Microsoft Authenticator,
- Twilio Authy 2-Factor Authentication
7. Not Logging into Any Insecure Portal:-
You can also prevent hacking by checking the security of a website. A website either has a hypertext transfer protocol secure (HTTPS), or a hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP) extension.
If the site indicates a “Not Secure”, exclamation mark, or an HTTP extension then it means that the site hasn’t been secured against cybercrime and has a lot of chances of compromising your passwords/data.
So, a wise way is to share data or login only on sites that have secured their SSL certificates which will be indicated by a padlock on the website.
8. Recognizing Fake or Malware Infected websites:-
You should be able to identify fake, spammed, or phishing websites by noticing these signs:-
- There are too many redirects on a website
- Files start downloading on your system automatically as soon as you enter any of these sites.
- Too many downloads, or play buttons for the same content.
- Multiple screen pop-ups
- The site mentions clickbait ads for example virus ads, winning a lottery, etc.
9. Resisting to Phishing Emails:-
Phishing emails are uninvited emails from unknown users in your mailbox that call you to take immediate action.
Cybercriminals send lucrative emails and manipulate you into sharing your data, or information. Here are a few steps to identify phishing emails:
Check Sender Information:-
Phishing emails are often sent from fake email IDS, hence it is mandatory to check the address of any unwarranted emails. These emails can also have extensions of famous companies which is a tactic to lure you into their scam.
Check For Spelling Mistakes, Grammatical Errors, and Punctuation:-
Legitimate companies have strict editing rules. Hence, a mail that contains too many linguistic errors is bound to be sent by a scammer.
Analyze Any Provocations:-
Scammers often send provocation emails that urge an emotional response from the user. So, before reacting and falling prey, check if the email is trying to incite an emotional response so that you click on a link, download any attachment, or make a financial transaction.
10. Be Vigilant While Downloading Anything From the Internet:-
Scammers spread malware online through our day-to-day portals and apps such as:-
- Media files like songs, images, videos, and slideshows
- Social media attachments
- SMS/WhatsApp messages
This modus operandi often contains a message that either arouses your curiosity, lures you into immediate action, creates a situation of panic and fear, or generates a feeling of surprise.
In order to safeguard oneself, it is imperative to keep in mind these manipulative tactics and check for any malicious intentions before taking any substantial action.
11. Don’t Jailbreak Your Device:-
We often jailbreak our devices to access banned apps, and change service providers, and phone settings. This might help us reach our desired goal but often leaves us susceptible to attacks and targets.
Jailbreaking alters the manufacturer’s basic settings and sometimes it also gives administrative authority to foreign elements. They can then make needless changes to the device’s security systems.
12. Check the Credibility of the Software:-
There are innumerable fake software’s available online that can violate your privacy and leave your system in tatters. Verifying the developer’s credibility is one of the first steps toward identifying genuine software.
If the developer’s name is unknown, the website is suspected, or the developer’s name hasn’t been verified by a third-party certificate authority, then before proceeding any further you can do some research on the developer’s authenticity.
As we have seen, hacking is one of the gravest crimes in the cyber world. We have also elaborated on a number of ways to prevent it. Protecting your password, using extensions, and checking the authenticity of the programs are fairly necessary, but none comes as close to ethical hacking.
Learners can also be hired by top business magnates, and cybersecurity organizations after doing a prestigious course. According to reviews, Knowledgehut Ethical Hacking Course (CEHv11) stands tall in the list. The CEH has been ranked number 6th among various ethical hacking courses by Forbes and has made space for itself in the top 10 ethical hacking courses recommended by Linkedin.
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