Hack the Hackers! Protect Yourself From Digital Spies!

Recently, hackers have made headlines whether they are debated anti-hero group, Anonymous, or possible terrorist. “Hacking” is a hot topic and a hot-button topic: who isn’t sucked in by a headline that involves someone’s personal information being hacked. It’s a term jokingly thrown around by “life-hackers” who are really just offering tips and tricks to making some aspect of life a little easier or more convenient.

 

The ugly side of hacking is when someone’s information– personal, financial, etc– is put at risk.
With so much of our information and personal lives put in the digital sphere, there is a high chance that you might be hacked. But fear not: there are simple methods you can use to protect yourself.
Netflix is an easy target for lower-tier hackers. Imagine settling in for a nice binge-sesh and you realize all of your “Sharktank” episodes have been replaced by “Tila Tequila.”
whaaa
This would be our reaction, too.
Unfortunately, the truth is stranger than fiction. “Dark Web” black markets steal and sell your Netflix account information like a pickpocket on the street would steal and sell your credit cards.
Ward off hackers by staying on top of your account and following these simple steps:
1. Go to your account page and sign out EVERYONE who has access
2. Confirm
3. Sign in and change your password. See this link for building an impervious password! DO NOT use password generators. They can also be hacked! http://www.connectsafely.org/tips-to-create-and-manage-strong-passwords/
Some general hack-proof practices to keep in mind are…
1. Be wary of hotspots. It’s incredibly easy to spy on your emails and online activity in public Wi-Fi hotspots. It’s not 100% inevitable that someone else in that coffee shop will be eavesdropping on your Facebook page while you sip your latte, but it’s not 100% secure either.
Verify the hotspot ID and password with the staff, not other customers. Hackers might go the easy route and set up a hotspot similar to the one being offered. Also limit the type and number of sites you visit while using a public hotspot. That lessens the likelihood that you’ll reveal anything worth stealing by a hacker.
2.Get a password manager. This means shelling out some cash, but in the name of protection, it’s worth it in the long run. Programs like 1Password are available across several platforms including Android, iPhone, Mac, and Windows. It utilizes Dropbox instead of the Cloud to store your information and relies on one VERY secure skeleton key password that then gives you access to ALL of your passwords. While a little labyrinthian in theory, it makes hacking your data much more difficult.
3. Make a VPN your BFF. As opposed to an IP address, which broadcasts the websites you use, a Virtual Private Network makes monitoring your online activity more difficult to trace. Information going between your computer and the VPN is encrypted as opposed to unencrypted IP addresses.
So do your research. Find password managers that have reputable developers and be aware of who else has access to public hotspots. In the digital age, it’s best to be armed to the teeth when it comes to protecting yourself and your private information.

Friday Reads: What’s on Your Shelf?

No office is complete without a bookshelf bursting with…well, books. A good eclectic mix is essential. Every manager is different and finds different genres and authors more useful or relevant than others, but every office needs a good mix of reference texts, fiction and non-fiction, and biographies.

So today we decided to peruse the bookshelves in our office and find a couple random titles. Each title is followed by a synopsis from the book jacket to give you just a taste of what our shelves have to dish out! Here’s our Friday Read mini-haul:

9780061232978Mavericks at Work: Why the Most Original Minds in Business Win by William C. Taylor and Polly LaBarre

Inside the cover:

“Meet the innovators and upstarts who are inventing the future of business. Their unconventional ideas and groundbreaking strategies can become your business plan for the twenty-first century–a better way to lead, compete, and succeed…

Organizations that were once dismissed as upstarts, as wildcards– or mavericks– are making waves and growing fast. There is a reason: In an age of hypercompetition and nonstop innovation, the only way to stand out from the crowd is to stand for something truly original…

Their success demonstrates that:

* Being different makes all the difference

* Sharing values beats selling value…

* Great leaders are insatiable learners”

 

 

book

The Road Ahead by Bill Gates

“In this optimistic and refreshingly realistic book, Gates looks ahead to show how the emerging technologies of the digital age will transform all our lives. As he says, we are on the brink of a new revolution, and crossing a technology threshold that will forever change the way we buy, work, learn, and communicate with each other…

Just as the personal computer revolutionized the way we work, the tools of the information age…will transform the way we make choices about almost everything.”

 

 

 

 

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The Click Moment: Seizing Opportunity in an Unpredictable World by Frans Johansson

“Today’s business environments are far too random and complicated…When you dig deep into the actions of successful people and organizations, you’ll find one common theme. A turning point occurs– a major client signs on, a new competitor redefines the market, an unlikely idea surfaces– and they take advantage of that serendipity to change their fate.

Microsoft Windows was on the brink of being shut down until two individuals met unexpectedly at a party and altered the fate of the world’s dominant computer operating system.

Starbucks sold high-end brewing equipment and coffee by the pound until Howard Schultz experienced his first latte in a cafe in Milan.

Nike was stumped on how to invent a spikeless trainer when a legendary running coach poured latex on a waffle iron.”