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How To Prevent Your Social Media Accounts to Be Hacked like Zuckerberg's Did

You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Mark Zuckerberg, probably one of the world’s most famous entrepreneurs, the genius who has got more than 1/9th of the entire world’s population on his social media website, Facebook recently got his not-so-popular social media accounts compromised. The news is startling and a warning to everyone that if a IT genius like Zuckerberg could be callous with his management of internet security, so could you.  While there’s certainly no such thing as 100% foolproof security while using computers, or anything else in real life for that matter, we can certainly make it extremely difficult or almost impossible for hackers to compromise our social media accounts. Today, our social media accounts are a goldmine for hackers, impersonators and trolls looking to put you in a tight spot if they manage to gain access to such private accounts.

What was the hack about?

A hacker group called OurMine bragged that it had broken into a handful of Mark’s social media accounts including his official LinkedIn, Twitter and Pinterest. Screenshots were posted on several news sites because of the unique way the hackers reported the exploit to Zuckerberg. They simply tweeted to themselves! “We are just testing your security,” the tweet read.

How did it happen?

It is unknown as of right now how   the hack occurred or which particular vulnerability was exploited. However, all eyes are on larger data breach in 2012 that compromised over 100 million accounts. It’s possible that Zuckerberg simply didn’t change his passwords after that.

Are you compromised?

Well if you’ve not been following safe web surfing practices, then chances are you could be in the sight of an exploit or are exposing yourself for a possible attack in the future. A simple way to check if your emails have been compromised to recent (or old) attacks is to go to the website https://haveibeenpwned.com/ and check all your accounts.

What can I do to prevent such attacks?

First and foremost, all your passwords need to be different. By all, I mean seriously all of them – do not ignore an obscure personal blog’s or a shady website subscription list or something as powerful s your main email account, Facebook or bank account’s website with the same password. Often, the lowest level of protection is given to websites that aren’t so famous. Thus, a security breach here would mean the hackers now have access to your email and the password used here, which if is the same anywhere, can be easily reverse looked up and immediately give access to a lot of other websites as well.

Secondly, always keep your password as obscure as possible. Allegedly, Zuckerberg’s password was “dadada”, which makes it incredibly easy to crack. A good password must contain a few capital letters, numbers and a symbol, preferably that’s not a statement.

Always insist on a two way authentication window, such as an OTP based login, wherever possible

It’s a good idea to click for email notifications for every login, and one on your cell phone too, if the website provides. That would help reduce damage as you’d get an instant notification if someone breaches your account.

How secure do you think your personal data is on social media? Let us know in the comments on our official Facebook page Entrepreneur India 

Edition: October 2016

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