What is “Getting Hacked”?
The term “hacked” can be used in many different contexts, but in this edition we will focus on your computer or device being compromised. The quicker you can determine that you have been hacked (like tourists blocking the sidewalk it is unavoidable!) the better you can minimize harm to yourself and the organization.
How do I know if my device has been hacked?
According to the SANS (SysAdmin, Audit, Network and Security) Institute, there is usually no single step you can take, instead there are several indicators. For example:
- Your anti-virus program has triggered an alert that your computer is infected, particularly if it says that is was unable to remove or quarantine the affected
- Your browser’s homepage has unexpectedly changed or your browser is taking you to websites that you did not want to go to.
- There are new accounts on your computer that you did not create.
- There are new programs running that you did not install.
- Your computer is continually crashing or running very slowly.
- A program on your computer requests your authorization to make changes to your system, although you’re not actively installing or updating any of your applications.
- Your firewall alerts you that a program you do not recognize is requesting permission to access the internet.
What do I do if I think I’ve been hacked?
- YMCA of Greater Louisville issued device:
- Do not turn off the device, that could destroy valuable evidence to determine the root cause.
- Contact the Help Desk via ZenDesk Ticket. They can scan your machine for malware to identify if you have any viruses and remove them if necessary to get you back in action and reduce the spread of infection to others.
- Personal devices
- Prepare ahead of time with backups. Periodically back up your personal devices and test that you can restore them using commonly available external drives.
- Periodically Change your passwords on your devices and web applications. Use a different device for web apps that you know is secure.
- Follow your anti-virus software instructions. If you are not sure about a file quarantine or delete it.
- Ask a pro. If you still can’t restore normal and secure operation of the device, leverage your warranty or support services from the place of purchase or turn it over to a repair specialist.