Cyber Security

Some of the major sins that get Users Hacked

Are you an internet user? I am sure you are. Today, we all are internet citizens or netizens which mean that we always have a need to go online to do one thing or the other. But going online has its merits and demerits. For those of us that are avid users of the internet, we already know the numerous benefits that we derive from doing so. But what of the downside? Getting hacked is a major ill that we all suffer.


I am sure that every one of us must already be familiar with a lot of the activities of hackers and cyber crimes. At some point or the other we have all suffered from these nefarious activities which resulted in our accounts being hacked by unscrupulous elements. And they can be unrelenting. Apart from getting a user’s email hacked, social media is not left out as social account hacked is now on the rise.

These cyber criminals are not satisfied until they get online users hacked and their accounts get compromised. It is as a result of these unwanted activities of hackers that make users seek for ways to prevent hacking. In this article, I am going to take some of your time to reveal to you the most common sins that get users hacked.

In addition, while these sins that get users hacked are actually the failings of users of the internet, they would also reveal to any user how these hackers work and as a result enlighten us all on those things that must be done to avoid getting our social account hacked by them.

A list of the sins that get users hacked

The do it yourself phenomenon

A lot of users have gotten training in information technology that is self-directed and self-serviced. Any organization should realize that they are exposed to more risk by granting their employees more freedom to install whatever they choose to and whenever they choose to do so.

The IT department of any establishment should be able to design and implement a method through which users would be free to perform their activities within the boundaries of audit controls and data governance policies over their processes and activities. Therefore, the lesser that a user is keen on doing things related to IT on their own without expert help and guidance, the more that they would avoid getting hacked.

Not being cautious on social media

Most hackers view social media as a fertile ground for hunting for their next victim to the hack. The reasons for this are numerous.

  • Firstly, they do so for research reasons. The kind of details which are shared by individuals on social media websites are also the type which make things much easier for a hacker to guess passwords. They can equally use the details which you have posted on these sites to determine what the answers would be to your password reset questions.
  • Secondly, sufficient details can also be provided about a hacker’s next target with which they can craft a message that would be extremely effective in spearphishing them. The method that these hackers adopt is to design graphics and plugins for social sites which are designed to mimic the branding of popular social media sites. This is because they serve as a perfect medium for the distribution of malware. A common and very popular trick used by these hackers these days is to get users tricked to click ‘like’ buttons that are fake on websites which would cause malware to be installed. This process is known as Clickjacking.

In essence, it is imperative that you limit the amount of personal details which you expose on social media websites because these details can be used against you by hackers.

Making use of WiFi in the public

A lot of users do not realize that most public WiFi are not protected. In fact, recent research data reveal that a good majority of data centers, convention centers, and hotels in a lot of countries are at risk to vulnerability in most commonly routers used by property and facility managers to provide to their guests WiFi.

As alarming as this discovery is, it is actually just one of the many dangers of making use of public hotspots, especially the free ones. These easily accessible WiFi provide hackers with a hunting ground that is fertile and rich because of the caliber and wealth of the patrons of these places.

The hackers easily establish footholds and connections to the devices of unsuspecting users in order to begin middlemen attacks. And by so doing those users hacked including their bank accounts and credit card details. The best advice for using any public WiFi is to protect yourself with a VPN like HideMyAss.  

Making use of passwords which are weak

This should be one of the most popular sins that get users hacked. I am sure you can still remember the breach which took place at Sony. It was a sad event in which the company’s secrets were exposed online. One of the revelations from that unfortunate hacking incident was that the passwords being used by staff including those working in IT were unbelievably weak.

How can anyone still be using “12345” or even “password” as their current passwords? Well, that is just the sad truth and reality about how users expose themselves to potential vulnerability. As much as possible, create a password that is hard to guess. Never ever leave the default password on any device.

Leaving your systems and devices unpatched

A startling amount of hacking arises due to attacks which make use of a few vulnerabilities which are popular. Recent research evidence have revealed that almost all of the breaches which are being successfully perpetrated by hackers involved their use of vulnerabilities that are already well known and been in use for several years.

This means that the devices of users get hacked due to their not being patched and up-dated against these usual attacks. We all know that technology is advancing at a very rapid pace. If you have invested considerably in any system or device, there is the need to always keep it up-to-date against attacks from hackers.

And it does not require much effort on your part. Many of these updates are free of charge. They also do not require you shutting the device and can actually be performed in the background while you are working on your system.

Falling victim to phone calls that are fake

In most situations, the simplest way for a hacker to gain access to the account or device of a user is basically just to simply request for it. All it takes is simply for the hacker to pretend to be an IT specialist and put a call to the would-be victim and request for their password and login.

In other situations, they could mimic a business partner or another employee and request the staff to click open a certain document or file which is actually the remote access to a virus or Trojan. The best practice in all scenarios is to not divulge your login details to any party no matter who they may claim to be. Also, avoid opening any documents or files on the advice of anyone.

Falling for the bait of Phishing

This is perhaps the simplest and yet most powerful method that a hacker makes use of to pull off even the most sophisticated of attacks. And the simple explanation for this is that it actually works. No wonder it is still the best friend of a hacker. Up till today, suspicious attachments and malicious messages still get opened by phishing recipients.

It takes only a matter of seconds for any phishing campaign to be launched by a hacker and before you know it the damage has already been done. I would want to advise here that as much as possible do not ever open any messages or attachments that are from unknown or suspicious sources. When in doubt, put a call instead to the sender to confirm that they actually sent you the message.

The Verdict

From the above, I am sure that you would observe that in most cases in order to prevent hacking to your accounts or devices, all you need to do is to exercise some form of caution and restraint. Do not be too hasty to open messages, files, and attachments.

When in doubt, put a call to the sender; that is, assuming you know who they are. Otherwise, simply ignore and delete such messages. By adopting the various recommendations mentioned, you would not fall victim of any of the sins that get users hacked.

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