Steps to Take After Getting Hacked
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6 Steps Users Should Take After Getting Hacked 

Most cybersecurity attacks have motives behind them whether it is stealing money or stealing data. That is why you see businesses getting targets more often because they are more lucrative targets. Fortunately, most enterprises and businesses have IT departments and some also have dedicated server security teams but what about the customers and users. 

What if they become a target of these cybersecurity attacks and data breaches? How can they protect themselves or react in such a situation? Liz Lasher, Vice President of Fraud, Financial Crime and Cyber Risk at FICO said, “Consumerscan report their incidents to the authorities, but they are better off taking practical, proactive steps to improve security.” 

Unfortunately, most users are unaware of what actions they need to take if their account is hacked, which complicates matters even more. To prevent users from playing into the hands of cybercriminals, we have created a list of steps users can take to minimize the damage after a hack. 

In this article, you will learn about six steps that users must take after getting hacked. 

Stop Panicking 

Users know about data breaches and elements of cybersecurity attacks when the damage has been done. If it is financially motivated cybersecurity, users will know about the attack when they receive their credit card bill or bank statement. The good news is that banks are taking security measures that can curb these issues. 

As a consumer, the first thing you need to do is to stay calm and keep your composure. Banks are great at offering a refund and a new card if your old card has been hacked. If you panic after hearing the news that your account has been hacked, hackers can feed off that panic and confusion and you might end up making wrong decisions during a crisis situation, which can cost you heavily. 

Take A Proactive Approach

Once you know that your account has been hacked, you should create a new email address for the hacked account and enter a different mobile number. Yes, entering new mobile numbers every time is not easy but it is a step you must take to minimize the damage. Next, turn on notifications of every app you use so it can notify you if there is a suspicious activity taking place. 

You can also freeze your credit and your children’s credit as most fraudsters create fake accounts collected from gaming applications and social media and use that data to apply for loans and credit cards from banks. In short, you need to actively take steps to curb the impact of cyberattack instead of passively waiting for it to go away, which won’t happen. The faster you act, the lesser will be the damage and quicker you will be able to recover from it. 

Defend Yourself 

Banks and credit card companies tend to issue a new credit card and even credit to consumers for unauthorized charges but they are the ones responsible for providing that the charge was not legitimate. This might seem a bit surprising to many people but the fact is that in most cases the burden of proof lies with the users. How can

users present the proof in such a situation? 

Ken Underhill, a master instructor at Cybraryrecommends, “Keep two copies oftax returns with two different cloud providers, have all bank statements on hand, and, for small-business owners, keep two copies of business receipts in the cloud. Take some time off every week to analyze all your accounts and statements and see if there are any unauthorized charges.” Users can also Chicago dedicated servers to keep their private data secure. 

Tell The Authorities 

When a user is hacked, they don’t even know which authorities to report the crime to. As a result, they end up reporting the crime to the wrong authorities who don’t take any action because it is not in their domain to do so. That is why it is important to know who the right authorities are and report any incident immediately so they can take immediate action and minimize the damage. For example, if the financial fraud is worth less than $300,000, you should not report it to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) because they won’t get involved in such a case, as they take care of more high profile cases.

Instead, you should file a consumer complaint with FTC especially, if your social security number has been stolen or misused. By reporting crimes to these authorities and following their guidelines, you can ensure speedy recovery from a dangerous situation. Authorities should also establish a mechanism that only makes the complaint filing process easier but also enables authorities to take rapid action. 

Take Care of Cyber Hygiene 

Most data breaches and cybersecurity attacks achieve success due to poor cyber hygiene followed by users. From using outdated software and operating systems to not taking a data backup, it puts your sensitive data at a higher risk. Users need to keep all their applications and operating systems up to date to prevent hackers from exploiting vulnerabilities in older systems. 

Always take a backup of your critical data so you can restore it if a disaster strikes. Use password best practices and avoid using the same passwords for all your accounts. Implement multi-factor authentication to add an extra layer of security to stop hackers from gaining access to your data and accounts. 

Use The Right Tools 

Users can use tools to not only keep their financials in order but also use these tools to make their lives easy. For instance, they can save all the different passwords in a password manager instead of remembering each one. Similarly, you can also use tools to take backup of your data. These tools let you choose which data you need to backup and how frequently you need to backup your data. You can select an option according to your needs. Some tools even let you automate and streamline different security processes and mechanisms. 

What is the first thing you do if you are hacked? Let us know in the comments section below.

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