How can a person avoid being hacked

Hello, I need some advice on how I can avoid being haked. Since July of 2014 every phone, computer, app, email address, bank acct. etc... have been hacked into and stolen from or altered. I feel that I am being targeted and no matter what I do things do not change. PLEASE HELP ME WITH THIS MATTER. Even right now . cant finish because they. Have stoped me from seeing. My message. I need help, this is serious and i do not know what to do.
5 REPLIES
Helper

Re: How can a person avoid being hacked


ahern144 wrote:
Hello, I need some advice on how I can avoid beinghaked. Since July of 2014 every phone, computer, app, email address, bank acct. etc... have been hacked into and stolen from or altered. I feel that I am being targeted and no matter what I do things do not change. PLEASE HELP ME WITH THIS MATTER. Even right now . cant finish because they. Havestoped me from seeing. My message. I need help, this is serious and i do not know what to do.

Hello,

 

Several things to do that should help:

 

1.) Update your virus definitions on your computer and run a full system scan.  Follow the prompts to catch anything that it finds.

 

2.) Get your hand written list of all your user-names and passwords.  Clear your cookies, cache, past login's from all of your computer web browsers, smart phones, mobile devices, everything.

 

3.) Create new passwords for all sites that you visit on every one of your devices.  Have the passwords contain at least one letter and one number.  User passwords that you can remember, but are difficult to guess.

 

4.) Write down your new user-names and passwords and keep that file in a safe place.  If it's on the computer password protect that file with a long name and number password.  Right that down and store that Master Password in a safe place.

 

5.) Contact any and ALL financial institutions with whom you do business, saying "I believe my computer data may have been hacked.  They will issue you new information.

 

6.) If you yourself have been the victim of on-line fraud or harassment, report this to local law enforcement authorities who can help you with this.

 

Satch

Valued Contributor

Re: How can a person avoid being hacked

[ Edited ]

 

Hi,

 

It sounds like you have severe issues with viruses/malware/hacking.  

 

Here are a few things you can try:

 

1.  TWC has a free anti-virus product with McAfee:

 

http://www.timewarnercable.com/en/support/internet/topics/internet-security.html

 

2.  Since it sounds like you have Malware on your pc, you can try cleaning up the malware with the following free tools

 

Malware Bytes:

https://www.malwarebytes.org/

 

Microsoft Malicious Software Removal tool

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/malicious-software-removal-tool-details.aspx

 

3.  After you have run a scan with the tools above, consider changing all of your passwords.  And set your passwords to something that is harder to guess.  For example:  password, mypassword, computer are examples of really bad passwords.  Some better passwords have uppercase, lowercase, and numbers.  Some good example passwords:  TouGH2GuEss27 or TougH2GuE55y14.  You may have to right these down and keep them in your desk drawer.

 

4. Consider using some Identity Theft protection services such as Lifelock that can scan your bank accounts and other public records to identify any identity theft.

 

Note:  If your PC is really infected, your browser may not even allow you to go to mcafee.com etc.  McAfee offers a virus removal service but its for $89  the McAfee number is:  866-966-8478  https://www.mcafee.com/consumer/en-us/store/m0/catalog/pvrs_311/mcafee-virus-removal-service.html

 

5.  Malware can be hard to remove from your PC.  If everything seems to be infected it may make sense to get a new computer.  Not sure how old your current PC is, but a new computer could be a way to start with a clean slate.

 

Also, some high level advice, don't click on links from email messages that look suspicious.  Don't provide anyone with your bank account or bank account passwords.  Also, hackers are good at disguising web links.  For example make sure you are at bankofamerica.com and not hackersite.bankofamerica.com

 

Consider just typing in bankofamerica.com or whatever bank, if you need to go there, and don't click on the web links in email.  

 

Beware of email messages that say we need you to update your bank password and go here to update it.   

 

Hope these help.  Let me know if you have questions.  

 

 

Helper

Re: How can a person avoid being hacked

[ Edited ]

mattfoley11 wrote:

 

Hi,

 

It sounds like you have severe issues with viruses/malware/hacking.  

 

Here are a few things you can try:

 

1.  TWC has a free anti-virus product with McAfee:

 

http://www.timewarnercable.com/en/support/internet/topics/internet-security.html

 

2.  Since it sounds like you have Malware on your pc, you can try cleaning up the malware with the following free tools

 

Malware Bytes:

https://www.malwarebytes.org/

 

Microsoft Malicious Software Removal tool

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/malicious-software-removal-tool-details.aspx

 

3.  After you have run a scan with the tools above, consider changing all of your passwords.  And set your passwords to something that is harder to guess.  For example:  password, mypassword, computer are examples of really bad passwords.  Some better passwords have uppercase, lowercase, and numbers.  Some good example passwords:  TouGH2GuEss27 or TougH2GuE55y14.  You may have to right these down and keep them in your desk drawer.

 

4. Consider using some Identity Theft protection services such as Lifelock that can scan your bank accounts and other public records to identify any identity theft.

 

Note:  If your PC is really infected, your browser may not even allow you to go to mcafee.com etc.  McAfee offers a virus removal service but its for $89  the McAfee number is:  866-966-8478  https://www.mcafee.com/consumer/en-us/store/m0/catalog/pvrs_311/mcafee-virus-removal-service.html

 

5.  Malware can be hard to remove from your PC.  If everything seems to be infected it may make sense to get a new computer.  Not sure how old your current PC is, but a new computer could be a way to start with a clean slate.

 

Also, some high level advice, don't click on links from email messages that look suspicious.  Don't provide anyone with your bank account or bank account passwords.  Also, hackers are good at disguising web links.  For example make sure you are at bankofamerica.com and not hackersite.bankofamerica.com

 

Consider just typing in bankofamerica.com or whatever bank, if you need to go there, and don't click on the web links in email.  

 

Beware of email messages that say we need you to update your bank password and go here to update it.   

 

Hope these help.  Let me know if you have questions.  

 

 


Good advice, (Read and Print all of this for reference before doing anything.)

 

Except I would not recommend McAfee.  Too bloated and only offers average protection.  The most important thing is to have only one Anti-Virus software on your computer at any one time.  More than one will compromise your security, cause slow-downs and conflicts:

 

If you have more than one anti-virus on your computer, remove all instances of the competing program that you don't want to use through Add/Remove Programs in Control Panel.  You will than need to reboot.  Than Google Search for the companies' software removal tool.  Be sure that you get the correct tool from the comanies' website!  Read the URL link in the site searches below carefully!

 

In fact, before you go searching for your Competing Anti-Virus Removal Tool, I would suggest downloading and installing My Web of Trust or My WOT.  This is a program that put's color coded safety ratings next to web searches.  Green-Excellent, Yellow-Caution, Red or Black=Bad.  It is based on millions of users experiences and will help you from going to a bad site.  When installed, My WOT will make sure that if you search for a competing anti-viruses' malware removal tool, that you are getting the legitimate one from a safe site in the search!  What anti-virus do you have now?

 

Follow the instructions in my post above first.  You will need to update your anti-virus definitions and run a full scan, clear all your history and cookies, and get new passwords for all of your sites.  Sucks, I know.  Than, like I said, contact all your banking, credit card companies, financial institutions, and say my account has been hacked.  They will send you new information to secure your identity.  If you yourself are being harassed or threatened due to a security breach, contact your local law enforcement personal.

 

Here is the link for My WOT:

 

https://www.mywot.com/

 

You can also register with the My WOT community and leave your own ratings.  They can also assist with suspected hacking recovery.  You will need to install My WOT to participate in the forums.

 

Additionally, a wonderful computer Help Forum called Tech Guy.org can help.  I have used them for years.  Here are those forums: You should post in the Security Forum there.  Here is that forum:

 

https://forums.techguy.org/

 

You will need to register.  They are fantastic and will be able to help above and beyond what we can do at the TWC forums.  You will need to provide some computer information at the Tech Guy Forum, and a dedicated virus malware removal specialist will assist you with this.  I would go register over there and follow their recommendations. 

 

It would be fine for you to do Matt's and mine prerequisites first:  (Note that his malwarebytes anti-malware tool is not an anti-virus.  You will need an anti-virus tool if you choose to use Malware Bytes.)  Do not get the paid version of Malware Bytes, it can conflict with an anti-viruses real time protection.  Malware Bytes is an optional line of malware defense.  But the main thing is to update your anti-virus definitions and run a full scan.

 

1.) Get My WOT on your computer go to mywot.com

 

2.) Look for any competing anti-virus software on your computer and remove any competing anti-virus software through add/remove programs in Control Panel.  Keep the one AV you want.  (If you only have one AV on your system, skip to step 6.)

 

3.) Reboot your computer.

 

4.) Find the competing AV removal product and remove it.use Google and type [company name] anti virus removal tool.  Look for the Green WOT symbol to download it and install it. After using the competing AV removal tool, reboot your computer

 

5) Open your existing anti-virus, update the definitions and run a full scan.  Follow the prompts for what it finds.

 

6) Go to techguy.org, register, and post issues, system information in the security forum, and the steps you have done here.  A malware removal specialist will help at that forum

 

7.) If you have no anti-virus on your computer at all, DOWNLOAD ONE AND ONLY ONE of these products:

 

If you have Windows XP:

 

Avast  https://www.avast.com/index 

OR

Bit Defender: http://www.bitdefender.com/solutions/free.html

 

If You have Windows Vista, Windows 7:

 

Microsoft Security Essentials http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/security-essentials-download

OR

Bit Defender: http://www.bitdefender.com/solutions/free.html

OR

Avast: https://www.avast.com/index 

 

If you have Windows 8, or Windows 10:

 

If you have no other anti-virus on Windows 8 or Windows 10, search for Windows Defender, click on the icon and run a full scan

 

If you have another anti-virus on your computer and want to use that instead, note that Windows Defender cannot be uninstalled, you will need to go into the program and turn off Windows Defender Real Time Protection.

 

Don't want to use Windows Defender on Windows 8 or Windows 10? Get

 

Bit Defender: http://www.bitdefender.com/solutions/free.html

 

OR

 

Avast: https://www.avast.com/index 

 

Than register and post at Tech Guy.org and the security forums for a more intense check of your machine.

 

www.techguy.org

 

1. ) All your login passwords will need to be to changed.  Make sure they are several characters long, easy for you to remember, but difficult to guess.  Remember to clear your cache, history, and cookies from all browsers.

 

2.)  All credit card and financial institutions must be contacted that you have been hacked so that they can send you new account information.

 

3.) Teach children and computer novices about web-safety and that they should never go to any websites, or open any files, or email messages, nor  give out any information to people that they do not know.  Have them be very careful on Social Media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and My Space.  Make sure that they are not downloading bad files such as movies or music for hacked or pirated sites.  My Web of Trust will traditionally flag those sites as Red or Black in search results to help you and your family stay safe.

 

Satch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sharer

Re: How can a person avoid being hacked

@ahern144,

 

     Definitely follow everything @Satch and @mattfoley11 have done. Now, there's one more thing you'll need to do:  Defense In Depth.

 

     If you don't have one already, I would suggest you have a proper firewall software installed on your system(s). Windows Firewall with/without Advanced Security is fine. However, you can also check into AVG, Avast, and the other sources for firewall protection; some provide this as an add-on, but still do your research before buying.

 

     Last, I would recommend adding a network device between your system(s) and your modem. Otherwise, your systems will be open to the entire world. Allow your device - whether router or firewall - to connect to your modem a.k.a. the untrusted world. Your systems, a.k.a. the trusted side, should connect to the device and provide whatever services you need (wired and/or wireless). You'll also need to set the device for NAT for use with the trusted side of your setup. That way, you can have as many devices running simultaneously and minimize your chances of a direct assault against you; the device will take the hit, and, where programmed properly, will also fight off attacks such as DOS and port scans.

 

pearsondl

Helper

Re: How can a person avoid being hacked


pearsondl wrote:

@ahern144,

 

     Definitely follow everything @Satch and @mattfoley11 have done. Now, there's one more thing you'll need to do:  Defense In Depth.

 

     If you don't have one already, I would suggest you have a proper firewall software installed on your system(s). Windows Firewall with/without Advanced Security is fine. However, you can also check into AVG, Avast, and the other sources for firewall protection; some provide this as an add-on, but still do your research before buying.

 

     Last, I would recommend adding a network device between your system(s) and your modem. Otherwise, your systems will be open to the entire world. Allow your device - whether router or firewall - to connect to your modem a.k.a. the untrusted world. Your systems, a.k.a. the trusted side, should connect to the device and provide whatever services you need (wired and/or wireless). You'll also need to set the device for NAT for use with the trusted side of your setup. That way, you can have as many devices running simultaneously and minimize your chances of a direct assault against you; the device will take the hit, and, where programmed properly, will also fight off attacks such as DOS and port scans.

 

pearsondl


Agreed,

 

Get a computer person whom you trust to securly encrypt your network with a password.  You especially need this if you have Wireless Internet.

 

Satch