Well the most common method of hacking a naive victim is to convince them to run a virus. Why would they even do that, you may ask, well its simple, they don't know its a virus! These days, viruses come with toolkits that help the evil hackers create them with ease. A simple Google search will reveal the toolkits available that can engineer a virus within seconds. Once the hackers make their virus, they upload it to file sharing websites, blogs, download websites, etc disguised as a legitimate program. Some smarter hackers even bundle their viruses with legitimate programs and trick the user in to believing that they have run the real deal. An example of this can be the setup of a free video converter bundled with a virus that can control your computer, steal your information, etc. Once downloaded, and the single program is run, two programs, the legitimate video converter setup is run, as well as the virus, hence, tricking the user in to believing that they have just opened a safe file.
More advanced techniques of hacking involve leveraging the power of Java. Advanced hackers will often make a Java applet that appears legitimate, but when run, downloads the real virus and executes it. This way the user thinks that they have ran a harmless Java web program, but in reality, the web applet has downloaded a harmful Windows EXE to their computer and opened it! Sounds scary right? Well luckily, XetoWare will discuss how to avoid getting hacked below.
When it comes to avoid getting hacked, the first thing that comes to mind is an antivirus program: and we definitely agree. Most users are looking for something free, and so are we. The best free antivirus program currently out there, in our opinion, is AVG. AVG will protect you from about 98% of threats, and is also decently resource effective. An antivirus is required because it not only scans every runnable file before you even open them, but every file at the second they are created! In this way, any threats are scanned and eliminated before you can open even touch them, protecting you from general as well as advanced methods of hacking.
But antivirus are just one part of the journey to full protection against hacking. Some hackers will even try to infiltrate your network, attempt to use buffer overflow attacks to inject code in your unaware system. What can you do then? Get a firewall is our answer to that. A firewall readily blocks insecure connections, as well as those that are blacklisted or have a bad reputation. Fortunately, Windows already provides a pretty decent firewall, called, you've guessed it, Windows Firewall. However if you are still in great concern, we suggest purchasing AVG Internet Security for full protection. On the other hand, if you are looking for something cost effective, Avast offers a pretty decent free firewall and internet protection package.
Lastly, use common sense. With common sense, you can already filter out 80% of the threats online. That is:
Do not go to suspicious, unpopular websites, especially those offering free downloads
Do not download unpopular, illegal or suspicious files
Do not run Java applets from unpopular websites
Do not run anything unless you have downloaded it from a reputable source such as CNET, Softpedia or Microsoft
But how do you really know if a program is safe? There must be an easy way right? Yes there is. If you must know if an unpopular file is safe to run or not, upload it to VirusTotal, but make sure unpack it first, if you have downloaded it as a ZIP or RAR.
Well, that's it! By reading this article, you have obtained valuable information on how to shield yourself from the great threats of the internet! Stay safe!