HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Twenty years ago, no one really knew the word cybersecurity. These days you would be hard pressed to find someone who didn’t know what that phrase means. Every website, from the government all the way down to your local department store now has some form of cybersecurity to protect it from hackers. This week Chandler Hall, a CyberSecurity Expert from Sentar, stopped by WHNT News 19 to give his perspective on just how safe or unsafe our personal info is on the internet.
Just how vulnerable is the average American to having their personal information, or their crucial account information stolen and used? “Up until just recently, it really became an issue of not how secure you are, but what did you have and how big of a target you were.” says Hall. “You know we talk lots and lots and we see them all the time, a celebrity has their cellphone hacked and they have naked pictures get out on the internet. Why does that even matter? Well, it’s what we know in my world as link bait. If I can post something that a lot of people are going to be curious about clicking on and looking at it, then I can infect that site with malware that will then inject capability into attacking you and make it possible that I could make this whole user name and password.”
“Now unfortunately there’s a new method of moneymaking, where crime rings are doing this.” says Hall. “They call it crypto locker. Where essentially a piece of malware gets on your website and infects your home computer and it encrypts every bit of it, and you have to pay digital currency, often known as bitcoin, but there are other ways to get that unlocked. And it can be devastating to most lay people, all of your pictures, all of your Christmases are now unobtainable to you and so it has become a new space and that creates a much wider money base, and a much wider opportunity for robotic and automated types of attacks to go out there and encrypt everything in your life. So today I would encourage that you really take some extra steps that we were coasting for a while and not having to do.”
View our entire conversation with Chandler Hall here in three parts: