Hacked Online Accounts

Anyone who is connected to the internet, and especially those who have online accounts such as social networking or email, could get compromised or ‘hacked’.  The faster you respond to a successful attack, the faster you can minimize the damage. 


How does an attacker get your password? 

  • From ‘phishing’ sites where you unintentionally gave your credentials 
  • From infected free software that you have installed on your computer 
  • Your online security is weak 
  • Your password is easy to guess 


How do I know if my online account has been compromised? 

  • Your browser redirects you to a website that you don’t want to go to 
  • There are suspicious accounts added to your system 
  • There are suspicious programs installed on your computer 
  • Your password can no longer work 
  • Your account is locked without your knowledge 
  • There are posts you never made which appear on your social network account 
  • Your friends receive email from you which you never sent 
  • You notice unauthorized transactions on your bank account 


What can I do if my online account has been compromised? 

  • Report the incident immediately to the website owner 
  • Change your passwords 
  • Make sure to clean your computer before resetting your passwords 


How can I protect myself? 

  • Check for system updates and install patches regularly to prevent any weaknesses in your system 
  • Always turn on your firewall and patch it regularly 
  • Keep your antivirus software and virus definitions up-to-date 
  • Scan your system for malware 
  • Use a different password for each of your accounts 
  • Keep your account information details safe, such as your username and password 
  • Make sure your passwords are long and hard to guess, but easy for you to memorize 
  • Delete all unwanted emails from your email accounts 
  • If a website offers ‘2-step verification’ settings, please allow it to do so. This will prevent an attacker from hacking into your account