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Is your personal information on social media protected from hackers?

On September 25th, Lehigh Valley Technology attended the Tech Takeover at the Factory in Bethlehem, PA. Along with fellow cybersecurity experts, we discussed the impact social media has on our privacy and how to restrict cybercrimes. In this day and age, technology is advancing at a rapid rate, and it's important for the public to know how to use technology safely to avoid potential attacks.

Hackers use a variety of methods to extract personal information from users, but one of the most popular strategies is called "social engineering." Social engineering involves hackers using something against people to gather information, money, etc. For example, these cybercriminals can use social media to get your name and call to pretend a relative is sick and in need of money. With information so accessible due to everyone posting online, it makes it easier for these people to get what they want. Often times, people will believe them, and unfortunately, that puts them at risk.

With social media use at an all-time high, people are sharing more about themselves through different platforms. People share where they go on vacation, the restaurants they visit, the services they use, and criminals use those posts to gather data.

Using a Wi-Fi network that is not secure is one of the easiest ways for hackers to attack your laptop or smartphone. It's essential always to use a system you trust, such as your home internet connection. People often use "free" or "open" networks, which put them at risk. It's also a good idea to invest in anti-virus protection to prevent phishing.

Phishing is a common strategy used by attackers to get personal information. Hackers will spoof your cell phone provider or utility provider to get consumer-based information. It's essential always to back up your data, so you are covered on your end.

Keeping your smartphone up to date with the latest security measures can keep you protected.

In the day and age of social media, it's easy for anyone to search your name on social media and find the answer to security questions. Make sure you pick a password that isn't something someone can find online.

By doing the above, you increase your chances of staying protected.

It can be hard to tell when your information has been breached, but below are a few ways you can determine if someone has access to your information.

1. There are unusual charges on your phone bill

2. Your smartphone battery drains constantly

3. Apps open randomly

If you suspect you have been hacked, you should contact your cell phone provider so they can assist you.

In a time where social media is advancing in popularity, it's easy for people with bad intentions to hack you. Make sure that you stay protected by using secure Wi-Fi networks, backing up your data, avoid using the information on social media, and keep your smartphone up to date. There are new forms of cyberattacks every day, so it's essential to stay informed, so you know you how to protect your information.

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