Quick Identification & Response to Hacks
How Do You Know if You've Been Hacked?
- Your friends tell you they've been receiving spam or phishy e-mail from your account.
- Your phone is receiving collection company calls about nonpayment. The battery and data usage are higher than normal. The charges from premium SMS numbers show up on your bill.
- You start seeing unwanted toolbars, homepages, or plugins appearing on your browser. You see a lot of pop-ups or web page redirects. The passwords you have online are not working.
- You receive a message about insufficient funds on your bank account.
- You receive a notification from a company that has recently suffered a security breach.
How to Recover From a Hack
- Use an unaffected device to change your affected passwords.
- Make sure to update your mobile software and apps.
- Update and use your antivirus software to run a complete scan. Use instructions that are provided to quarantine or delete any infected files.
- Update browser and software plugins and check that they are updated.
- If your computer is still behaving oddly, the best option may be to completely reformat your machine to make sure that all affected software is fixed.
- Report to credit agencies to prevent identity theft if you believe personally identifiable information has been affected.
- Be prepared and backup files frequently. Consider having two backups, one on an external drive and one on cloud storage.