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KRACK Attack: How safe is your WiFi connection?

KRACK attack how safe is your internet connectionA disturbing flaw in Wi-Fi networks has allowed for hackers to eavesdrop on data being passed through most modern Wi-Fi networks. This means that any device, from laptops and mobile phones to games consoles and tablets, could all be vulnerable to hacking with credit card numbers, passwords, chat messages and emails all potentially under threat.

Known as a key reinstallation attack or KRACK for short, this newly discovered flaw was unearthed by Marty Vanhoef, a Belgian researcher. What’s more, the researcher claims that the problem is not limited to any one device or operating system and instead is an issue with Wi-Fi as a whole.

This hidden programme could be capturing everything you type

ECL blog 38You might not realise it, but your computer could be infected with a form of malware which collects everything you type into your keyboard. Throughout the day it could harvest passwords for your banking, social media accounts and other personal information –which could lead to identity fraud, blackmail and more.

What is a key logger?

The programme in question is called a keystroke logger – or a key logger for short. While these programmes can sometimes be used for honest purposes, they are often also used by cyber criminals as a way of mining important personal information from individuals or businesses. This information could then be used to hijack your accounts, steal customer or client information, exploit your bank account or blackmail your business.

How prepared are you for a massive data loss?

clip_image002The ability of a business to recover quickly from an IT disaster cannot be underestimated. Getting back on your feet in a speedy manner can help avert financial loss, harm to reputation and other negative impacts. While we all hope that our own businesses will never be affected by disruptive incidents like cyber attacks, theft, fire or flooding, they can happen and failing to prepare is preparing to fail!

A good place to start when considering how prepared you are for a data loss is to look at some of the potential scenarios that could enable one, as while you may think you have plans in place you might not have covered every angle.

Ransomware here to stay says Google

binary damage codeBusinesses are being warned to protect themselves after tech giant Google released research claiming that cyber thieves have extorted a total of £19m from ransomware since 2015.

At a talk at the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas, Elie Bursztein from Google revealed the results of research conducted with Chainalysis, the University of California and New York University which looked at bitcoin transactions over the period. It concluded that ransomware has become a “very profitable market and is here to stay”.

Interestingly, Google highlighted the fact that less than 40% of computer users currently back up their data – a move which could protect you in the event of a ransomware attack. It also predicted that more varied strains of ransomware are being developed to compete with the already popular Locky and Cerber strains, which according to the report generated £5.9m and £5.2m from victims respectively.

Windows 10 update to make Ransomware attacks more difficult

code-1839406_640Controlled Folder Access – that’s the name of a new feature coming to Windows which could add extra protection against dangerous Ransomware like WannaCry and Petya.

News coming from technology website The Verge says that Microsoft will include a special tool in their next major update expected in September.

The ‘Controlled Folder Access’ option which will be found in the Windows Defender Security Centre will offer users an option to ‘protect their files and folders from unauthorized changes by unfriendly applications’ thereby preventing a user being ‘locked out’ of their files by a Ransomware attack.

How to lock down your Wi-Fi

Have you noticed that your Wi-Fi connection at work is slow and lagging? Are you struggling to upload documents and download files? It could be that someone is piggybacking off your Wi-Fi to surf the internet, reducing the amount of service available to you and your colleagues.

While you want your broadband signal to be strong and wide reaching so that everyone working in your offices can get adequate internet access, it’s important to have limitations in place. If you work in a busy urban area with lots of surrounding houses, shops and other businesses then chances are that your Wi-Fi signal is in reach of an unauthorised surfer.  Not only is it unfair for someone to access an internet service that you are paying for, but it can also slow down your speeds which can make it difficult for you to do your work.

How safe is Google Docs?

Launched in 2012, Google’s trio of services - Google Drive, Google Docs & Google Sheets - are a popular way for businesses to carry out their work online.

Google Drive acts a cloud storage service, Google Docs as an alternative to Microsoft Word and Google Sheets as an alternative to Microsoft Excel.

Among the perks of these services is the ability for multiple users to edit their work in real time. This means that from a business perspective you can have various different people working on a document and making changes that will be reflected instantly.  Because of the easy to use nature of Google’s apps, more and more businesses are becoming reliant on their services, storing lots of important and sometimes sensitive information along the way. But, exactly how safe is it to rely to on these services?