Tis the Season for Hacking

National women’s clothing retailer Bebe suffered a hacking attack on their credit card payment system. According to Martyn Williams, The company said Friday [12/5/14] that the cardholder name, account number, expiration date, and verification code could have been stolen by hackers who apparently had access to the company’s payment processing system between Nov. 8 and 26. The best advice they can currently give customers is to check their statements and see if there is any suspicious activity. Credit card breeches have become common, hitting every company from Target to UPS. Williams also says “the U.S. payment industry is moving to a more secure chip-based payment card technology in 2015. The cards have been common in Europe for about a decade and have additional security features that make theft more difficult.” Make sure you and your customers are safe and avoid being hacked! Follow these easy tips:

1. Software Updates are annoying. No one likes doing them. They take time and make people question, “Is this really worth it?” The answer is a definite yes! There’s a reason software updates are recommended. If there is a weakness in your software, you will be more susceptible to hackers.

2. Firewalls block the bad guys. Making sure your firewalls are set up properly can protect you from outside  hackers or even viruses. You can also personalize your firewall settings to gauge how much of your data you will allow the Internet to access.

3. Passwords are a pain too. They’re easy to forget. It might seem easier for you to pick a simple password and use it on ALL of your online accounts, but the reality is that easy passwords make it easy for hackers to steal your precious information. Chose passwords with a variety of capital and lower case letters, numbers, and even symbols. And, have different passwords for different accounts and change them often. I promise, it’s a much bigger pain to cancel all your credit cards and open new email accounts.

4. Delete emails from unknown senders. DON’T even open them. This a little tricky, because hackers are getting extra sneaky, and have started sending emails that look like they could be important. If in doubt delete, delete, delete.

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2 Responses

  1. Tiffany says:

    Thank you for the helpful tips!