3.10.2009

Don't Let This Happen to YOU!

Over the weekend, my Facebook account was illegally hacked by a "cybercriminal" all because I used a "weak" password on the internet (as I NOW realize). It was a very scary thing to have happen, but it's opened my eyes to the importance of keeping your internet activity as safe and secure as possible. Facebook was super diligent in alerting me to the "possible illegal activity of someone else trying to sign into my account." When I opened my computer to check it out, sure enough there were 3 instant message conversations on my account going on that were not really from me. The cybercrimal was impersonating me on my own account at that actual moment! Horrifying! So, I took the advice given to me in the previous fb email and changed my password immediately. No more happened. One of the IM conversations from "Claire" was telling a friend that my husband and I were in London and had been mugged at gunpoint losing everything! ... What they are after is MONEY, and they are drawing on the sympathy of your friend community on Facebook. Thankfully, it didn't get too far. FB deactivated my account for a day, and had me go thru a verification process, and then my account was reactivated. All seems well now.

I'm posting a link to a recent article in PC World Magazine about the 5 major scams targeting Facebook in the last week. Please read and share with your children, too.

Also, here is some helpful info a security operator on facebook gave me that I wanted to share that is great for all internet users regarding passwords:

The majority of these cybercriminals have been hacking into the email accounts of their victims before they hack into their Facebook accounts. If a person uses the same password for both their email and Facebook accounts, a hacker only needs to compromise a password once. If a hacker is able to compromise the password associated with a user's email account (either though brute force or through more sophisticated means), then he can use that password to enter the user's Facebook account as well.

You should change the password for all of your internet accounts and make sure that no two passwords are the same. You should also create passwords that are at least 6 characters in length and that you use a complex string of numbers, letters (both upper and lower case), punctuation marks, and other symbols. Your passwords should never contain any words that could be found in the dictionary. By varying and strengthening your internet passwords, you can protect yourself against future hacking attempts.

9 comments:

DaisyGiraffe said...

Claire, that's awful! I'm so glad you caught it right away. Thanks for the reminder about strong passwords.

Amanda said...

Claire,
That is the worst thing I have heard all day! I changed all of my passwords right after I read your blog post. Also, the vacation you and Tom took was awesome! The pictures of the villa are incredible!
AMR

Claire Kayser said...

Yes, you can increase your internet security simply by creating a strong password. You just have to buck up and create different strong ones to be safest...

Thanks on the pic compliments! We really had a wonderful time...

See you soon, I hope!

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