| Hi Taylor:
I'm hearing more and more about businesses and people getting hacked
and it's starting to freak me out a little. Is this our new normal?
Has it always been this bad and I'm only now hearing about it? - Tiffany
Hi Tiffany: Hacking and malware aren't novel problems, but
you're definitely hearing about it more now than you used to. The
problem is getting worse because, as security measures improve, the
ransomware efforts seem to get smarter. It's also important for individuals
to take preventative measures because these attacks happen all over
the place, not just to big companies and government officials.
but effective. If you read any of the details of the various
attacks, whether on an individual or an organization, it almost
always starts with a phishing email or post. Your account has
been compromised or click this link to learn more. Once the target
takes the bait, credentials are stolen and the criminal party
can get to work on implementing whatever nefarious plan they've
got. This is how the Colonial Pipeline hack happened. It's how
the city of Baltimore was attacked back in 2019. It's how millions
of people have their identity stolen every year. It's why we all
need to be careful before we click.
2. Preventing hacks. The individual is more susceptible to
identity theft than an actual ransom effort, but we're all vulnerable
to malware no matter what. Making sure your anti-virus software
is updated frequently and you're not constantly opening emails
from unknown senders is a good place to start. Beyond that, you
just need to be as safe as possible and keep your information
backed up. Computer technology advances by the minute, with protective
software fighting to keep pace with the new practices of cybercriminals.
At this point, we're all still catching up with the level of the
3. Future of ransomware. There was never a question that
people had the power to infiltrate networks and do devious things
with sensitive information. The past year has laid bare the fact
that many networks are no longer contained within an office space,
but rather stretch as far as where the remote workers are. Shoring
up internet defense systems becomes increasingly challenging with
so many points of entry for hacking groups. As the best and brightest
work on long-term solutions, our best safety resource is to have
everyone act with caution. As long as everyone within a system
makes smart choices, the rest of the team remains much safer.
| Our wealth
and safety are inextricably tied to our devices and the internet to
which they connect. It can be a little overwhelming and scary if you
give it too much thought, so the better choice is to be conscious
of the threats and take whatever precautions you can. Good luck!
Information presented is for educational purposes only and is not
an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of any specific
securities, investments, or investment strategies. Investments involve
risk and, unless otherwise stated, are not guaranteed. Be sure to
first consult with a qualified financial adviser and/or tax professional
before implementing any strategy discussed herein. To submit a question
to be answered in this column, please send it via email to Question@GoFarWithKovar.com,
or via USPS to Taylor Kovar, 415 S 1st St, Suite 300, Lufkin, TX 75901.