Crack Your WiFi Password To Protect Yourself

Ever wanted to be a hacker? Today, anyone can learn code and understand the ins and outs of all the technology we are simultaneously blessed and cursed with. But once you know how all this technology works to the point of calling yourself a hacker (which, by the way, isn’t necessarily a bad word), then everyone in your life will be calling you to fix their devices. Hackers are often technologists that are inventive, curious and take technology to the edge of its limits. They often break it so they can fix it.

2WAnyway, one of the more interesting hacking professions is the “penetration tester,” which is someone hired by companies to determine the vulnerabilities in a company’s networks and then patches those vulnerabilities so bad guys can’t get in. “Penntesters,” as they are known, are good-guy hackers also known as “white hats.” Their counterpart bad-guy hackers, known as “black hats,” are also penntesters—but they don’t do it to look for vulnerabilities to then secure the network; they do it to ultimately get in and steal stuff for their own personal gain.

One of the best ways to protect your own network is to hack your own network, as Lifehacker shows us here. “A new, free, open-source tool called Reaver exploits a security hole in wireless routers and can crack most routers’ current passwords with relative ease. Here’s how to crack a WPA or WPA2 password, step by step, with Reaver—and how to protect your network against Reaver attacks.”

What this hacker does is explain how the attack works, seeing the vulnerabilities users can use to reverse engineer this process to protect themselves.

Whether on your own network or on someone’s free wireless network, a VPN such as Hotspot Shield VPN  will mask a user’s IP address and protect all wireless data from thieves. But if a router is hacked, that vulnerability may still allow for an attacker to plant code on various devices. So check out the Lifehacker post and lock down your router with encryption.

Robert Siciliano is an Identity Theft Expert to Hotspot Shield VPN. He is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Identity Was Stolen See him discussing internet and wireless security on Good Morning America. Disclosures. For Roberts FREE ebook text- SECURE Your@emailaddress -to 411247.

Beware of iOS app vulnerabilities when on WiFi

We know WiFi is insecure. When logging onto any open (often public and free) unencrypted WiFi, your data is there for all the snoopy snoopers to see and download for their own personal gain.

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But now researchers have found a whole new hack for you to protect yourself from. When iPhone users launch an application, the app sometimes has all its data right there on the device. But more often, the app is talking to its home server, meaning it’s calling home, and will download what you need on demand. An example would be a weather application that is definitely getting all its data from the app’s home server, while a game might have everything it needs on the device.

Still, even in the case of the game, there still may be ads on the game, and those would be streamed to the app. Researchers discovered that there seems to be an issue within iOS that allows for hackers to manipulate the server address the app calls out to in a way that allows the attacker to change the URL address to one that serves up malicious links that would download to the iOS device.

Currently, it is not known if criminal hackers are using this exploit; there are no known reports. The hopes are that Apple will make a quick fix and patch this vulnerability before attackers latch onto it.

Meanwhile, you should only download applications from trusted sources such as Google Play or iTunes—and only use a secure wired or wireless connection when going online. A VPN such as Hotspot Shield VPN will protect users data from the snoopy snoopers…but until Apples fixes this issue, all users are vulnerable.

Robert Siciliano is an Identity Theft Expert to Hotspot Shield VPN. He is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Identity Was Stolen See him discussing internet and wireless security on Good Morning America. Disclosures. For Roberts FREE ebook text- SECURE Your@emailaddress -to 411247.

Employees putting data at risk on WiFi

Employees expect to uses their mobile devices at work, and employers often don’t mind because of the cost savings. However, being able to use personal smartphones and other mobile devices at the office creates problems for IT managers. A small business with 100 employees might have an additional 300 “bring your own device” users to contend with, all using phones, tablets and laptops. There are a lot of potential leaks there.

While a company’s IT department may have a solid grasp on company-issued laptops, desktops and mobile phones, it is almost impossible to control the various types of personal devices on the company’s network. When you get that new, shiny device and install various apps, and then plug it into your work desktop to update or sync necessary settings, files and folders, you’re putting all the data in the company at risk. Further, the IT guy has to worry about whether that last app you downloaded might infect the entire network.

A recent survey showed just how much employees who use public WiFi while commuting back and forth to work shows they are putting their companies’ data at risk. A survey conducted by GFI Software doesn’t paint a pretty picture. “The research findings reveal a stark and concerning trend among commuters—one of using their personal devices to catch up on work during their commuting downtime, but doing so over highly insecure internet connections that can be easily intercepted by other users or the operator of the access point. Mobile internet access is now firmly entrenched as a day-to-day norm, but with that has come an increasingly relaxed user attitude to data security, compliance and data governance policy. Companies need to address mobile device management to ensure that use in insecure environments doesn’t create vulnerabilities that could be exploited by criminals—both cyber and conventional.”

In the least, these companies should have policies that explicitly spell out what employees can and can’t do on their devices and if they are allowed at all on the network. But in reality, policies are only as effective as the consequences of not following them. If employers want to prevent data leakage, then enterprise-level software must be installed on each device that allows IT to lock, locate and wipe data, along with to restrict the device’s access to certain activities.

Having each device equipped with a VPN (virtual private network) like Hotspot Shield VPN is an effective way to encrypt the devices’ WiFi communications when on unencrypted public WiFi.

Robert Siciliano is an Identity Theft Expert to Hotspot Shield VPN. He is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Identity Was Stolen See him discussing internet and wireless security on Good Morning America. Disclosures. For Roberts FREE ebook text- SECURE Your@emailaddress -to 411247.