As modern technology progresses so too does the intelligence of scammers and hackers. SIM jacking or SIM swapping is just one of the new ways innocent people are being targeted and having their data, life savings and private information stolen.
Undoubtedly, getting hacked or being the victim of an intricate scam is something none of us want, and we will go to great lengths to ensure it never happens to us. But how much do we really know about protecting ourselves and our data against this danger?
SIM swapping or SIM jacking targets weaknesses in two-factor authentication and two-step verification processes, and allows scammers to assign your mobile number to a new SIM card by impersonating you and bypassing face to face security measures. This then gives the hacker access to all of your private information including security codes and other private data and passwords used to access bank accounts and other highly personal data.
We use our mobile phones for everything these days, beyond communicating with family and friends, our mobile phones are used for work, entertainment, banking and just about everything else, so the devastation of losing it all would be a disaster.
Here are eight simple ways to protect yourself from hackers and keep your data and personal information safe.
1. Be cautious of what you share online.
Social media makes it very easy for us to share a lot of our personal information online, but be careful what you’re putting out there. Never share photos or videos of your ID, be it your driving license, passport or anything else with your full name and photo on it. Be mindful of other information that you share such as your Internet provider, phone carrier and anything else that a hacker might be able to use when pretending to be you. Also ensure you’re not sharing or using pets names, family names, birthdays or any other easily identified information for your online passwords. If a scammer is stalking your online presence it’s much easier to figure out a password if the information is readily available online.
2. Use authenticating apps
Google authenticator is a great app to use for two factor authentication. It’s easy to use and the best part is, even if someone did take over your SIM card, you would still have control over your data and logins for any apps that are set up with Google authenticator. Once you start using Google authenticator, you can stop using other two factor authentication methods such as SMS codes or online codes that are sent to your email or through the app themselves.
3. Set up a SIM PIN
Assigning a PIN to your SIM card adds an extra layer of security and means that if a hacker did gain control over your SIM, they would still need to know your PIN in order to access all of your information. Setting up a SIM PIN is easy, simply go into the settings on your phone, and under mobile settings enable the SIM PIN function.
Dotting your I’s and crossing your T’s in regards to your online safety is something we should all do, don’t wait until it’s too late to take your privacy seriously. Set yourself up now to ensure you are never put at risk by following our simple safety measures, and ensure you’re changing your passwords every now and then.
4. Download anti-malware application
To avoid getting hacked, we can’t just rely on the built-in security system of the device you have because usually this tool is not strong enough to protect against malware. So, for extra protection of your data, we recommend you to download an anti-malware application. Anti-malware application can provide stronger protection from hackers who want to steal your private data. In addition, the best anti-malware software can remove malicious malware or viruses faster and in real time.
5. Avoid accessing personal and private information using public computers and Wi-Fi
If it is not urgent to check and use your personal information or banking account on a public computer or Wi-Fi, it’s better not to do it.
Although public Wi-Fi is like a lifesaver when you’re away from home or work, it’s important that you can still be aware of your personal information security while using public Wi-Fi.
Using a public computer or Wi-Fi may seem harmless, but they can be dangerous if you’re using them carelessly. If someone is using a “man in the middle” attack on the public Wi-Fi, they could get their hands on your personal information and use it for their own purposes.
The best way to protect yourself from these kinds of attacks is to only use secure devices and connections when accessing sensitive information—like bank accounts or credit cards.
6. Do not open any link carelessly
Whenever you receive a link from someone you don’t know or from a website you aren’t familiar with, you should never open it immediately and carelessly unless you want to get hacked. Always search the information about the link before you decide to click it.
7. Educate ourselves about cybercrimes
Did you know that over half of the world’s population is online? It means that there are a lot of opportunities for cybercrimes to occur.
It’s important to familiarize and educate yourself about the concept of cybercrimes to avoid being hacked or scammed. If you have been aware about cybercrimes and learned about it carefully, you can prevent it in the first place.
8. Use VPN for private browsing
Nowadays, the internet is a very dangerous place. When you’re using the internet, there are a lot of ways to get hacked. You could be browsing questionable websites, or even just clicking on links in emails from people you don’t know. It’s scary out there!
One of the ways to use the internet safely is with a VPN or Virtual Private Network. VPNs are basically secure tunnels between your computer and the network you’re connecting to. When you connect to a VPN, all your internet traffic is routed through that tunnel and encrypted before it leaves your computer. This means that even if someone were to intercept your data on its way back and forth between your computer and the internet, they wouldn’t be able to read it because it’s protected by encryption generated by the VPN provider!
There are many VPN services from various brands. You can purchase a premium VPN for a monthly or yearly plan inside the Beneko App with the cheaper price compared to other places.